Loneliness this Christmas #justsayhello

12 Dec 2023

Loneliness this Christmas #justsayhello featured image

With loneliness soaring globally, especially during this Christmas season, Ros Thomas, one of our newest Churchill Fellowship recipients, aims to tackle this issue head-on.

Living alone is increasing, leading to record levels of chronic loneliness in Australia. Ros’s Winston Churchill Fellowship will study effective community models to combat this alarming trend worldwide.

Ros’s personal experiences—from witnessing isolation in aged care to facing loneliness when starting a new job—underscore the project’s urgency. Loneliness isn’t just emotional; it impacts health significantly, increasing stress and heart risks.

As her short video shows, ‘lonely people don’t choose to be lonely,” “loneliness does not discriminate,” “It is a secret suffering,” “loneliness is a profound state of distress,” “loneliness feels like surviving, not living,” “One kind word from a stranger can be the beginning of something beautiful,” “A way back to social connection,” “#justsayhello2024

Ros will travel in 2024 on her Churchill Fellowship to the Netherlands, Sweden, UK and USA to understand and assist those affected. Through interviews and portraits called ‘the Loneliness Project’, Ros will illuminate individual stories. Read more about Ros and her project here. 

Thinking of applying for a Churchill Fellowship? Applications open 1 March. Sign up today for information sessions being held online in February 2024. 

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