Loneliness and social isolation are serious threats to health and well-being, especially for individuals with mental health conditions or disabilities. In fact, the U.S. Surgeon General reported that loneliness is a national epidemic. Research has shown that those who are lonely have a higher risk for heart disease, stroke, and dementia.
A recent segment on NPR featured two programs – the Phone Buddy program at Commonwealth Care Alliance, and the Friendship Project Pilot, a partnership between CCA and Worcester-based organization, Advocates. The feature includes a story of two women participating in the Phone Buddy program who met through Commonwealth Care Alliance. The women have formed a friendship and talk on the phone every week.