I aim to eradicate loneliness!
Hi, my name is Janice and I am the founder of www.oapschat.co.uk. OAPSchat stands for Optimistic and ProActive Seniors Chat. OAPSchat was born in April 2013 as a Facebook page.
One lunchtime, my family and I were talking about the lack of websites for over fifty fives. So I decided to look into this more thoroughly. There are a few, but they are celebrity based or specific to grandparents etc.
My late mother was very fortunate during her final years in that she was able to stay in her own home and be cared for by my sister and myself. We would often discuss the plight of the elderly and sick who are less able and do not have family connections and not many friends.
Loneliness is a big scourge on our society worldwide and the website helps combat this awful isolation by coming together and sharing our thoughts and ideas.
So I decided to launch my OAPSchat FB page and post and comment about the silver and golden years. A blog was set up and I started to write weekly columns on health, money, lifestyle issues,relationships, memories and much much more. The FB page grew slowly at first, but gradually I was having more and more likes. The Daily Mail mentioned me twice in 2013 and more likes followed. To date there are over 1536. It was in November 2013 that I decided I had enough material and confidence to launch the website.
Since that day, I have been writing articles on all kinds of topics. I now have over ninety five wonderful contributors to date and articles on all different subjects are posted on an almost daily basis. Members can comment via disqus, FB and Twitter. To date there are 1385 articles and this figure is growing steadily.
When people are lonely and can interact with one another, they feel better and learn to laugh again. Loneliness causes depression and is also responsible for feelings of hopelessness.
I received a text today from one of my members who is stuck inside and said he feels “fed up, depressed and very lonely”. “If only I could see someone to talk to.” With a video chat link installed, he would be able to interact and feel less isolated. To date, I have not found a company that sells one at a reasonable price, but I shall keep looking!
I am an Independent List Winner 2014 for founding the website and vowed to continue tackling loneliness. http://www.oapschat.co.uk/49-news/149-independent-on-sunday-s-happy-list-2014
I cannot run the website without funds, so this is why I am asking for your support. I am looking to raise £1000 in order to have the best hosting facilities and also to continue to look into incorporating a video chat programme on the website.
OAPSchat is well and truly born now and I hope it will continue to thrive. With your support, I'm confident it will!
Whatever you can afford will be spent entirely on the website expenses.
Thank you so much.
I support your idea of connecting older people but why don't you apply to the charities that help older peoepl for support , such as Age UK? I give regularly to Age Uk and they do have similar projects. I would rather give funds to a registered charity.
Can I send a cheque Janice instead of putting my bank details online? I was hacked into once when I did that so am happier using cheques if possible x