Christmas, Telephone Friend next to those who are alone

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Christmas is the holiday in which we try to be all together. But it is not always possible, especially in times of pandemics, when meeting friends and relatives is difficult and for some people impossible. There are elderly people far from their loved ones but also many families forced to distance themselves. That’s why, again this year Friend phone renews its commitment to non-stop telephone listening from 10am on 24th December to midnight on 26th. «In 2020, in three days, from 10 am on the 24th to midnight on December 26th, we received over 500 requests for help. The 41% more than the previous Christmas, pre-pandemic, ”he explains Monica Petra, president of Telefono Amico Italia.

On non-holiday days, the unique Telefono Amico Italia number ((02 2327 2327, the national one, WhatsApp 324 011 7252) is usually active from 10.00 to 24.00 but this year, as has been the case for several years, volunteers from 24 on December 26th they will answer 24 hours a day.

“Last year the requests for help arrived during the Christmas marathon were really many, in line with the overall increase recorded during the first year of the pandemic, which was the 70% compared to an average year. And since calls have not decreased in 2021, we are expecting another very busy Christmas. Even if the concerns related to the healthier aspect of the emergency have been somewhat alleviated, unfortunately, the feeling of fragility and loneliness that the pandemic has left us is still very strong».

Men between the ages of 36 and 55 call the landline number more often, while women use the listening channel via Whatsapp more easily. The volunteers I answer the phone are 500 people, distributed in the twenty centers of Telefono Amico Italia present on the national territory and who offer their listening free of charge to those in need. Sometimes a word of closeness can change the fate of an entire day.

Anyone interested in starting this path can write to voluntari@telefonoamico.it. Those who want to give a little help can join the fundraiser At Christmas, give listening launched by Telefono Amico Italia together with Gift Network.

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