In the month of June, as the warmth of summer arrives, it's the perfect time to foster meaningful connections and embrace the power of togetherness. Loneliness Awareness Week (12th - 18th June 2023), hosted by Marmalade Trust, provides a wonderful opportunity to raise awareness about loneliness and encourage conversations around this important topic. This year's theme is 'connection,' inviting us all to embrace little moments of everyday connection.
As part of our new monthly series, we've put our heads together and found four opportunities or ways to feel less lonely and build meaningful connections in June - one for each week. As always, comment below, or drop us a line on social media to share your connection ideas.
June offers a plethora of community events in the UK that can provide fantastic opportunities for connection. Look out for summer fairs, outdoor markets, music festivals, and art exhibitions in your area. These events bring people together, fostering a sense of belonging and providing a chance to meet new friends who share similar interests.
June is also the Month of Community, where we celebrate everything that makes our communities great. There will be plenty of community events and celebrations across the UK, and opportunities to support a variety of charities and causes. Some highlights include:
📍 Great Big Green Week
10-18 June 2023
The Great Big Green Week is the UK’s biggest ever celebration of community action to tackle climate change and protect nature.
Every year, people come together to unleash a wave of support for action to protect the planet. Tens of thousands of people in every corner of the country celebrate the heartfelt, brave, everyday actions being taken to stand up for nature and fight climate change.
📍 The Great Get Together
23-25 June 2023
The Great Get Together celebrates what unites us and rejects division, inspired by Jo Cox’s message that we have more in common than that which divides us.
A Great Get Together can be any event that brings people together, including holding a Big Lunch! Some suggestions from the organisers include:
a Great Walk Together (in partnership with Refugee Week)
a Great Watch Together (in partnership with Cinema for All)
a Great Write Together (in partnership with library charities)
June is also known as Pride month! To get involved in a Pride parade or event in your city, check out this useful guide: gaypridecalendar.com/world
📍 Have a Grow Day
Have a Grow Day is a national celebration of all things community growing, run by Social Farms and Gardens. They’re encouraging all their members to host an event on Saturday 3 or Sunday 4 June to celebrate. If you’re part of a community garden, city farm, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), care farm or anything else, why not get involved? Events can be all shapes and sizes, and Social Farms and Gardens have put together a pack to help you get started.
Get out there
Take advantage of the longer days and warmer weather by engaging in outdoor activities. Join a local sports club, go for a hike in the countryside, or organise a picnic in a nearby park. Group activities not only allow you to enjoy the beauty of nature but also provides an excellent opportunity to bond with others.
One of my favourite things to do is outdoor swimming. Have you tried it? Check out The Outdoor Swimming Society if you're interested, it's a space within which a community of independent spirits can share the joy and adventure of swimming outdoors. Or just search 'outdoor swimming near me' to find a nice spot local to you.
Bring sunshine to someone else's day
Giving back to your community not only benefits others but also helps you connect with like-minded individuals. Find local volunteering opportunities in your area, such as helping at a food bank, organising a neighborhood clean-up, or assisting in a charity event. Volunteering allows you to meet new people who share a passion for making a positive impact. Volunteers’ Week
Volunteers’ Week (1-7 June 2023) is an annual celebration of the contribution millions of people make across the UK through volunteering in their communities. The ideal time to find lots of tips on how to start volunteering and loads of inspiring volunteer stories!
Get involved in Loneliness Awareness Week
For Loneliness Awareness Week 2023, we're encouraging everyone to harness these moments of connection. Together, we can all feel less lonely. Getting involved in Loneliness Awareness Week is simple.
Spread the word - Join us now
Stick a poster in your window, use virtual meeting backdrops, and inspire others through your newsletters.
Build connections - Be a part of it
Talk about loneliness with others, join a walk, or host a social event.
Add your plans to our Connections Map at https://www.lonelinessawarenessweek.org/map and explore what's happening in your area.
Share connections that matter - Let's talk
Share meaningful moments with colleagues, neighbours, friends, and family.
In the month of June, we have the opportunity to cultivate meaningful connections and ease feelings of loneliness. By attending local events, engaging in outdoor activities, volunteering, joining social clubs, and participating in Loneliness Awareness Week, we can foster connections and make a positive impact on our well-being and the well-being of others. Embrace the power of connection, and remember, even the smallest moments of interaction can make a significant difference. Let me know how you get on!
Meg at Marmalade Trust