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Dailies revive pen pal scheme which connected more than 1,000 worldwide

Donna-Lousie Bishop 1Two sister dailies have revived a pen friend scheme which helped to connect hundreds of people worldwide earlier this year.

The Eastern Daily Press and Norwich Evening News have relaunched their Here to Help: Not Alone appeal, which was introduced to help combat social isolation and loneliness during the first coronavirus lockdown.

The project, led by community life reporter Donna-Louise Bishop, went on to connect more than 1,000 people across the globe.

New volunteers are now being sought to write letters to isolated people during the new lockdown.

Donna-Louise, pictured, said: “Last time we launched the Here to Help: Not Alone pen friend campaign, we heard from hundreds of people from East Anglia and around the globe – from as far as Australia, America, and Japan.

“We managed to connect more than 1,000 people, including individuals writing to residents in care homes, families sharing stories with people living on their own, and even children forming long-lasting friendships via the medium of writing and drawing.

This time we want to try and keep morale high by making sure no one feels alone during these uncertain times.

“Here to Help: Not Alone is all about steering the focus towards positive mental health and wellbeing and counteracting the effects of social isolation.”