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How much time should children spend online?

children online, teenage girl looks at phoneWe have been hearing mixed messages this week about how much time children should spend online. First the Children’s Commissioner Anne Longfield compared young people’s Internet usage to bingeing on junk food and encouraged parents to stop them overindulging during the summer holidays. In response, the former head of GCHQ Robert Hannigan said that parents should encourage children to spend more time online developing their digital skills.


How Carers become Lonely

CarersThroughout August we will be shining the spotlight on loneliness among carers. Nearly 7 million adults in the UK look after a sick or disabled family member or friend who cannot care for themselves. Carers often have little time to themselves and can become lonely and socially isolated.




Jamie’s story: Spotlight on Disability

BearWe all know that life can be lonely sometimes – even for people who are surrounded by friends and family. Loneliness doesn’t necessarily come from being alone: it is caused by a mismatch between the social interactions you want and the ones that you actually get. Technology can help very lonely people to feel less alone, or can be a tool to help lonely people engage more with those around them. In today’s blog, we hear the story of Jamie, a young man with severe learning disabilities whose life was changed by the great work of Solihull Life Opportunities and access to some WaveLength technology.



Television, Loneliness and Disabilities

SOLO members with learning disabilities enjoy the Smart TVMany people believe that televisions isolate people, distracting them from spending time with friends or getting out into the “real” world. At WaveLength, we don’t agree with this. We see all the wonderful ways that televisions can bring people together, or bring the real world to those who can’t get on their own through illness or disabilities. This week’s blog is guest written by Solihull Living Opportunities, which provides care and activities to people with learning disabilities. Here SOLO tells us how they use their WaveLength Smart TV in their day centre Daylight.


Spotlight on Disability – AAPNA

Spotlight on AAPNAOne of our partner organisations is AAPNA which offers home and respite services to disabled people in the BME community. We provided AAPNA with tablet computers which their clients use to Skype friends, download favourite music and take photographs to share with family members. We asked AAPNA to tell us a little about how loneliness affects their clients, and how their services help to alleviate this loneliness.



Loneliness and Disability

SOLOThis month we are exploring issues of loneliness and disability as part of our Spotlight on Loneliness month. A survey conducted by Sense in 2015 found that one in four disabled people feel lonely on a typical day – for young disabled people aged 18-34 this rose to well over one in three. This month we will discover some of the reasons for this trend, and explore ways that the loneliness of disabled people can be alleviated.



Spotlight on : Blackpool Coastal Housing

Liverpool Housing Trust 2 copyIn our work with homeless charities and Housing Associations, we often hear stories of ex-homeless people struggling to adapt to living in a home of their own. Rough sleeping often means having people around all the time, with very little privacy. Moving into a homeless hostel can create a new sense of community with other residents, staff and visitors. But after months or even years of this moving into a new, empty flat can be daunting and lonely. In some cases newly housed people have fallen back into damaging behaviours or even chosen to live on the streets again to escape that loneliness. That is why we believe it is so beneficial for newly housed people to have a TV or a radio to make their house feel like a home. In this week’s blog, Blackpool Coastal Housing tells us about how they helped Mr A move into a home of his own, after sleeping rough for 5 years.


Spotlight on: Growing Rooms

Growing Rooms is part of St George's Crypt

When the University of York researched our work last year, they found that media technology could help recovering addicts to reduce their use of damaging substances. That is why we donate TVs and radios to organisations like Growing Rooms, a service offered by St George’s Crypt to help homeless people overcome addiction.

Here, Christine from St George’s Crypt tells us more about Growing Rooms and the difference it makes to service users.



Spotlight on: Glentanar Court

A young man shows an older female Cairn tenant how to use a tablet computerToday’s guest blog is part of our Spotlight on Homeless month and has been written by Sarah Findlay of Cairn Housing Association, which provides affordable housing and support services to thousands of people across Scotland. One of those houses is Glentanar Court where Sarah develops a variety of projects and activities for residents. Here, Sarah tells us about how social media and WaveLength tablet computers can bring tenants together.

To help us fund more projects like these please donate to our Spotlight campaign today. Thank you.


St. George’s Crypt, Leeds

Homelessness, LeedsThis May we went to Leeds to visit St. George’s Crypt. St. George’s offers homeless men and women in and around the city vital support in the form of accommodation, training and therapeutic care. For this week’s blog, Christine from St. George’s tells us more about the work that she and her colleagues do at the Crypt, and the ways that we at WaveLength are able to help them help others.