Celtic Foundation put emphasis on mental health with latest charity project

By Euan Davidson

June 29, 2021

The Celtic FC Foundation have been busy throughout the pandemic, and their new focus is on the mental health of the elderly.

Working alongside Glasgow’s Golden Generation and the Eric Liddell Centre in Edinburgh, the Foundation are aiming to combat loneliness and isolation across Scotland’s central belt. With the impact of Covid-19, elderly people have often found themselves without visitors. Being particularly at-risk during the pandemic, this has had obvious effects on mental health.

What the Foundation and their partners are planning to do is to provide meals and conversation. Their Befriending project aims to alleviate isolation for over 1000 vulnerable senior citizens.

The Foundation announced [Celtic FC Foundation]:

“For the FFGF’s most recent initiative, Celtic FC Foundation – with the backing of the Scottish Government’s Communities Response Fund – is aiding the mental health and general wellbeing of older people across Glasgow and Edinburgh, overseeing a targeted befriending and feeding programme to alleviate loneliness and isolation as a result of mandatory COVID-19 social restriction measures.

“Partnering alongside long-time collaborators Glasgow’s Golden Generation in the West of Scotland as well as the Eric Liddell Centre in the East, this project is aiding 1,600 older people across Scotland’s major population centres, offering comfort and respite in challenging times. The initiative offers a meal (directly delivered to a participant’s door and as per their dietary requirements) and the option of a chat and social interaction with specially-trained staff from each organisation.”

Mental health is a hugely worthy cause, especially amongst senior citizens

While the spotlight on mental health has been increased over recent years, it’s not been as much of an emphasis where the elderly are concerned. Particularly in popular mental health narratives, even though the language we use has radically changed, and initiatives have popped up.

The Mental Health Foundation found that 85% of older people with depression had no support from the NHS. While dementia, Alzheimer’s and other mental health conditions can often take precedence, depression and anxiety affect the elderly just as readily.

Loneliness and isolation are key mental health risk factors / (Photo by Getty Creative)

Perhaps there’s work to do regarding the stigma attached to mental illness in elderly communities. Whatever the case, it’s an important area to tackle. Wee should be proud of our club’s foundation for their work here.

John McMillan, CEO of the Eric Liddell Centre, commented [Celtic FC Foundation]:

“The feedback from those we have supported has been incredible, with many confirming that the project has reduced the burden of providing food, but just as important has been the social contact and interaction with a helpful member of staff. This has played an important role in reducing levels of loneliness and isolation.”

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