Pub is The Hub has launched a new call to action poem and advice guide for Loneliness Awareness Week, which runs from today (Monday, 14 June) until Friday, to encourage more publicans to think about how they can help tackle loneliness in their local areas.
Titled ‘Call Last Orders for Loneliness’, the poem has been written by poet David Attree and has been produced in partnership with INN CROWD, the national arts project supported by Arts Council England, whose work includes working with publicans to help them alleviate social isolation in their communities.
Join Inn – Last Orders for Loneliness campaign
The poem is inspired by Pub is The Hub’s ‘Join Inn – Last Orders for Loneliness’ campaign, www.pubisthehub.org.uk/join-inn-last-orders-for-loneliness/, supported by Heineken, which builds on the not-for-profit organisation’s community services work. The campaign aims to engage and support publicans to help people living in their local area to become better connected, helping them to feel less isolated and therefore less at risk of experiencing feelings of loneliness. Watch the poem here:
Never has tackling loneliness been more important
David Attree, a regular poet on BBC Radio’s Upload, said: “Following the Covid-19 lockdowns it has never been more important to help reconnect people feeling lonely, isolated and disconnected. I hope my poem inspires more publicans to encourage people to ‘Join Inn’ through their pub.”
Research in Heineken’s ‘Open Arms Report’ by Loughborough University on the role pubs can play in tackling loneliness found that 64% of those surveyed felt their local pub was one of the main places people living in the local area can socialise.*
Mick Dore, publican of Young’s pub The Alexandra in London’s Wimbledon, encourages people who may be at risk of social isolation to connect with others at a weekly ‘MeetUpMondays’ group – https://ruralcoffeecaravan.org.uk/meetupmondays-home/
Mick said: “If a pub isn’t there to help with loneliness, I can’t think what it is there for. Events like our ‘MeetUpMondays’ make a real difference to people. We really enjoy hosting them too.”
Resources available to help ‘Join Inn’
The ‘Join Inn’ campaign seeks to give publicans tools, ideas and contacts to help them tackle loneliness in their local areas. Getting involved in the ‘Join Inn – Last Orders for Loneliness’ campaign isn’t about publicans having lots of tasks to do, it is about simple actions and behaviours that can make a difference to someone’s day and connecting with others in their local area that can help identify and engage people to ‘join inn’ at their pubs.
New ‘Creating Connections’ guide
To support publicans Pub is The Hub has launched a new ‘Creating Connections’ guide offering tips on how they can reach out and promote connection within their communities. Download the free guide here:
Another guide offering publicans ideas on how to tackle loneliness is also available here: PiTH-Join-Inn-Guide-JAN21.pdf (pubisthehub.org.uk).
Pub is The Hub has also produced a new poster for publicans to use to encourage pub customers to help people at risk of experiencing feelings of loneliness to get out and ‘Join Inn’. Publicans can download it here: www.pubisthehub.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/PiTH-Join-Inn-Poster.pdf
Deborah Kemp, Pub is The Hub’s Ambassador for Loneliness, said: “We appreciate publicans have lots on their plates at present as they rebuild their businesses after the Covid-19 lockdowns. But this Loneliness Awareness Week we ask them to just start thinking about the invisible pandemic still out there of local people suffering isolation and feelings of loneliness. With a little help and support many would welcome and benefit from regular social interaction and activities on offer at their local pub.”
Publicans as ‘community connectors’
She adds: “Publicans, as natural ‘community connectors’, are so well-placed to help tackle the ever-growing issue of loneliness in their communities. Publicans who have already ‘joined inn’, say it has not only had a positive impact on the people they have helped, but it has also been beneficial for business too, with people viewing their pub more positively.”
Sharon Herron, publican at Stonegate Pub Partners pub The Keel Row, in Seaton Delaval, Northumberland, who helps support and connect people in her community at risk of social isolation, said: “It makes me feel good when I lay in bed at night that I have helped make a difference to someone’s day. Just little things can have such a big impact on someone who is feeling lonely or sad.”
Join Inn inspiration
Publicans can find case studies featuring some of the simple ways to help people ‘join inn’ at their pubs and useful organisations who can help set-up groups and activities here: www.pubisthehub.org.uk/join-inn-last-orders-for-loneliness/join-inn-inspiration/
Show time: offering opportunities to ‘Join Inn’
Arts project INN CROWD is supporting this Loneliness Awareness Week campaign from Pub is The Hub, highlighting how offering live performances are a good way for publicans to diversify and attract locals to join in at pubs. Find out more here: https://inncrowd.org.uk/
INN CROWD’s Dawn Badland, said: “Our feedback from publicans who host our tailor-made shows for pub audiences, is that coming along enables local people who are more isolated to increase their involvement in their community, as everyone who attends now has something in common and something to chat about which helps to create connections and friendships.”