Big Lottery Fund
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The Silver Line receives £975,000 of National Lottery funding

The Silver Line, the charity dedicated to supporting lonely older people with an around-the-clock helpline and friendship service, were yesterday awarded £975,000 from Big Lottery Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK.

Over the past four years The Silver Line has received over £10 million of National Lottery funding in order to support those feeling lonely, as well as provide the only free, national, confidential 24/7 Helpline for older people. This is the last grant to The Silver Line, who received a first award of £5 million in 2013, which enabled the launch of this vital service.

This final grant will enable the charity to put plans in place to secure its longer term future and ensure sustainability so that its important work in tackling loneliness and isolation in older people can continue.

In August, The Silver Line Helpline hit a record of 1.5 million calls since launch and is currently taking over 1400 calls a day. Thanks to National Lottery funding, the charity has also been able to recruit and train 4000 volunteers, the Silver Line Telephone friends, in order to support the volume of calls.

Joe Ferns, UK Funding Director at Big Lottery Fund, said: “The Silver Line has grown exponentially over the last four years thanks to National Lottery funding and has made a vital difference to the lives of thousands of isolated older people. The charity has worked tirelessly to tackle the epidemic of loneliness and isolation across the UK and has supported those in need, 24 hours a day.

“With the increasing demands on the Helpline, there is much more to be done. We are delighted to provide this final grant which is about helping The Silver Line to secure their future. We look forward to seeing them continue to grow and reaching ever greater numbers of lonely or isolated older people.”

Sophie Andrews, Chief Executive at The Silver Line, yesterday said: “Thanks to National Lottery players we are able to answer the 1400 calls we receive each day at the helpline as well as supporting the volunteers who make weekly calls from their own home. We would not be here today without the generous support of the National Lottery. As a new charity we have responded to the huge demand for our service but still believe there are many more people that we need to reach. Our challenge now is to raise the £5 million per annum that we need to run the service and to be fully sustainable following this crucial National Lottery funding.”

Big Lottery Fund is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by National Lottery players for good causes. Last year it awarded almost £713 million and supported almost 14,000 projects across the UK for health, education, environment and charitable purposes.


Kayleigh Sandwell:, 020 7211 3728

Press Office: 020 7211 1888

Out of hours media contact: 07867 500572

Sophie , 020 7224 2020

Notes to editors

Big Lottery Fund uses money raised by National Lottery players to help communities achieve their ambitions. From small, local projects to UK-wide initiatives, our funding brings people together to make a difference to their health, wellbeing and environment. Since June 2004 we have awarded £8.5 billion to projects that improve the lives of millions of people.


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