A community interest company set up in Huddersfield to combat loneliness during the pandemic now has 850 volunteers worldwide.

Give…A Few Words encourages people to write letters or make crafts to send to strangers and over the last 12 months more than 4,000 have been written as it goes from strength to strength.

It was set up by Sharron Wilkinson who had worked for Volunteering Kirklees for many years and the company has just released full details of loads of events it has lined up in June for National Volunteers Week and Loneliness Awareness Week 2024.

Volunteer letter writers are not just from Kirklees but from all over the UK and overseas too including Europe, California, Mexico, India and Australia.

Sharron said: “Our writers come from all walks of life and all communities. We have carers, new mums, families, students, husband and wife teams, people who have retired, are out of work, have health issues and many more.

“We also have support and writers from local and national schools, libraries, writing clubs, colleges, the scouts, the University of Huddersfield, charities and voluntary organisations.”

Businesses and organisations involved include Huddersfield Giants, Leeds City Region, Locala Health and Wellbeing, Morrisons supermarket and other national and global companies including Cummins Turbo Technologies, RSA Insurance and chemical companies Lubrizol and Syngenta.



Give…A Few Words’ programme of events in June includes a dementia awareness session, crafting summer wreaths, colour therapy, making trinket boxes as well as stands to find out more at Morrisons in Waterloo, a Health and Wellbeing Fair at the John Smith’s Stadium and a very special volunteer event. See the full list at www.thegive.co.uk

Sharron added: “We are passionate about reducing loneliness and improving social connections and we are thrilled to be celebrating both these national weeks.

“Loneliness and social isolation are very real and can affect people of all ages, backgrounds and communities and can have major health implications.”

The World Health Organisation’s Research Commission on Social Connection (2024–2026) aims to see loneliness recognised and resourced as a global public health priority.

Sharron said: “There is still a huge stigma attached to loneliness and we wish to bring people together in a positive way to be able to help others but also be an uplifting social group ourselves too.

“Focusing on positive, uplifting interests and writing or crafting about them for others is not just good for our recipients of letters which go out to local care homes, charities and for people across our community.

“More than 98% of our volunteer team recently surveyed said that writing or crafting positive words for others also helps their own wellbeing too.”

One volunteer said: “Having experienced health issues myself that, at times, left me feeling quite isolated, the opportunity to reach out to others by writing letters has been life changing and life enhancing.

“It is wonderful to belong to a worldwide community of letter writers, all of whom are committed to Give A Few Words to brighten someone’s day. I have found my people and that is such a wonderful feeling.

“The world can feel rather grim at times, but Give A Few Words just feels empowering. A few kind words can make such a difference.”

Another said: “It has been one of my best decisions of the past year. I love writing and especially writing letters. In my everyday life it’s usually text or phone.

“A letter can be written and read over and over and lets someone who needs it know they are not alone and others care. It has given me another purpose and allowed me to reflect on my life.”



Sharron added: “Quite simply, we couldn’t do any of this without our incredible volunteer team who are genuinely some of the kindest and nicest people I’ve ever met.

“They give their time, many every single month, for others with nothing at all expected in return. They are the heartbeat of what we do and are what makes this organisation truly special.”

Give…A Few Words is supported this year by National Lottery funding and the One Community Foundation which is based in Huddersfield.

If you wish to find out more about the June events, workshops, writing or receiving letters from Give…A Few Words visit www.thegive.co.uk or email them at hello@thegive.co.uk

Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR (https://ah-pr.com/) specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting. 

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