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Isolation and Loneliness

With support from the Scottish Government’s Social Isolation and Loneliness Fund we developed our Kindness Calls to support Urdu and Pujabi speakers and increased our offer of translated resources in Community Languages.

Chest, Heart & Stroke Scotland’s Chief Executive Jane-Claire Judson said:

“We know that living with a disability or long-term condition can be hugely isolating and that for those who are unable to read or communicate fluently in English, this isolation can be even more significant.

“This funding from the Scottish Government will greatly enhance the ability of our support services to reach non-English speaking and minority ethnic populations in Scotland to reduce isolation and loneliness.

“Ultimately, it will allow us to engage with and support more people across Scotland who are living with chest, heart and stroke conditions, better enabling them to live their lives to the full.”

Health Information in Community Languages

Our easy-to-read guides and health information pages help people understand their condition, manage symptoms and live well at home. Our resources hub includes resources available in Polish, Ukrainian, Punjabi and Urdu. You can also view translated transcripts on some of our videos here.

Go the the Resources Hub

Sadaf’s Story

Sadaf Khan is 41 and lives in Airdrie with her husband and three daughters. A housing repairs call handler at North Lanarkshire Council, she is now a Kindness Caller with Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, delivering support calls to service users in Punjabi or Urdu.

I also thought it was a very important thing to do because many older people in the Asian community are quite isolated.

“I have a little more time now the kids are back at school. I also thought it was a very important thing to do because many older people in the Asian community are quite isolated. They perhaps came to the UK without speaking English and never picked it up because they didn’t need to.

Knowing they can get a call from someone who not only speaks their language but also comes from a similar background is a really helpful thing for this community because you can connect them to their roots.

“I think some people can feel trapped in their own thoughts and a little frustrated if they can’t speak about what’s bothering them or don’t have anyone to chat with. Many older people who have a long-term health condition can feel very isolated and don’t want to be a burden to their families, so having a volunteer who speaks your language and understands where you come from is so important.


Connecting Calls

I call a lady every Tuesday for a chat. Most of the time we’re speaking in English because that’s her choice, and I’m happy to do whatever is most comfortable for her.

I call a lady every Tuesday for a chat.

“What’s wonderful about our chats is she can share her experiences with me knowing I understand because many of those experiences are mine, too.

“I feel very privileged that she trusts me enough to share things with me. It’s a lovely position to be in, where you know someone looks forward to your calls so much.

“Volunteering is something everyone should do if they have even a little time. You get such a sense of fulfilment from it. And being able to volunteer and help people from your community who just need to talk to someone, that’s priceless. I am reconnecting her to her roots but I’m reconnecting myself too.”

If you – or someone you know – are feeling lonely or isolated, our Kindness Volunteers are here to provide regular Kindness Calls, offering a chat and a friendly listening ear.

You can register for Kindness support on our website by visiting Kindness Calls or you can call our Advice Line on 0808 801 0899.

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