A solidarity campaign has been launched to support the major holiday activities, a symbol of hope for many lonely seniors.
For over 60 years, Little Brothers has been working to ensure that as many lonely seniors as possible can share in the joy of the holidays, including those who are unable to go out on their own. This year is no exception to tradition. Nearly 2,500 seniors who receive companionship from the organization will be invited to a festive meal in their community, or will receive a warm visit from a volunteer in their home.
Rising prices for goods and services have not dampened their determination to share precious moments and offer small kindnesses, even if this represents a budgetary challenge for the organization. The shortage of jobs, the difficulty of recruiting volunteers and finding rooms for Christmas parties have only increased the need for mutual aid and adaptation.
In the midst of the holiday season, Little Brothers is launching a solidarity campaign to reach out to more than 700 new volunteers across the province and raise funds. Last year alone, 500 new seniors knocked on the organization’s door or were referred by health and social services professionals to receive support in overcoming loneliness.
On this December 5, the national day dedicated to the recognition of volunteer work, Little Brothers hope that their call for public mobilization will be heard.
A pressing need for volunteers and donations
Little Brothers points out that its mission relies almost entirely on the volunteer commitment of some 3,000 dedicated individuals in 12 administrative regions of Quebec. The organization also points out that only a fraction of the financial support it receives comes from the government, at 15%.
With the progressive aging of the population, the work of Little Brothers has never been more relevant, or more necessary. The impact of social isolation on health is recognized as being comparable to smoking, a sedentary lifestyle, obesity and hypertension. Little Brothers’ volunteers play a key role in the lives of the seniors they support, by reinforcing their ability to overcome difficult situations and encouraging their social participation.
“Many people live alone and are therefore more prone to experience loneliness as they grow older. The seniors who spend the holiday season with Little Brothers tell us how much they feel the generosity of our community. We welcome them to our table; they are members of our extended family,” says Catherine Harel-Bourdon, President and CEO of the organization.
” When you support Little Brothers, you’re reaching out to someone who feels alone. You’re also supporting a large network of kindness and friendship that works for the well-being of Quebec’s vulnerable and aging population. Your time, your donation, enables us to maintain our current level of support, and increases our ability to identify people in situations of social isolation, who are in great need of us,” she adds.
A campaign that brings people together
To meet the need for human and financial resources to support their essential mission, Little Brothers is counting on a wave of solidarity. Until December 17, engaging messages will be broadcast on the platforms of their partner Quebecor. Their spokesperson, actress Marie-Thérèse Fortin, lends her voice to the TV ad slogan: “It’s by bridging the gap with seniors that we’ll put an end to their isolation.”
The campaign highlights the touching story of Mrs. Diane, a Great Friend who contacted the organization just before New Year’s Eve 2020. A call that was enough to change the meaning of her life.
The funds raised will be used to support the organization’s flagship holiday activities – a symbol of hope for many elderly people who have no family or friends – as well as the actions and programs offered each year.
People of all ages and from all parts of Quebec are invited to create lasting and meaningful ties with the lonely seniors in their lives. They can fill out a volunteer form or make an online donation.
Director, Marketing Communications and Public Relations