Greater Cleveland Volunteers creates Chat Pals


Social connection is one of the fundamental factors effecting health and wellbeing. Time and time again, studies reveal how a lack of social interaction and loneliness can increase health risks for society, and  more significantly, affect older adults.  

 According to the Center for Disease Control, social isolation is a major health risk for older adults,  leading to mental and physical conditions. More than one-third of adults aged 45 and older feel lonely,  and nearly one-fourth of adults aged 65 and older are considered socially isolated. There was an  increase obviously during the stay-in-place order and to follow pandemic protocol.  

Greater Cleveland Volunteers realizes the issue will continue long after the pandemic protocol and  created Chat Pals, a telephone or video-based (Facetime or Zoom) program designed to be a support  system, which hopes to provide emotional support and companionship to people in our community.  

“Participants will receive a call from a trained, background-checked volunteer on a weekly basis. The  goal is to match volunteers with a participant based on like-minded interests and experiences, so that a  friendship can be formed remotely.” Explains Joy Banish, executive director of Greater Cleveland  Volunteers. 

The program will be available for participants aged 55+

If you want to learn more about being matched with  a volunteer caller, or know someone who may benefit from this program, contact Kirsten Riley (216) 391- 9500 x 2124 or 

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