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Research shows quarter of Coloradans above age 65 could be lonely or socially isolated

Study reveals quarter of Coloradans above age 65 could be lonely or socially isolated
Study reveals quarter of Coloradans above age 65 could be lonely or socially isolated 02:14

According to the latest census report, more than 15% of Coloradans are above the age of 65 and research shows about a quarter of them could be lonely or socially isolated.  

Denver metro area nonprofit, "A Little Help," which serves the state's aging population, says those numbers are only going up. Because of that, it needs more volunteers. 

At 97 years young, Bobbi Holliday may live alone, but her social calendar is as full as ever, thanks in large part to regular check-ins from people like Bruce Feustel.  

Feustel is among several people who pay the Navy veteran a visit. Three years in, poetry has become a pillar of their treasured relationship.  

"It means everything to me to have them to come," Holliday said.  

"She listens to every nuance and she asks questions that make you realize that every word you say to her, she savors, and she connects to," Feustel said.  


Holliday is one of about 2,000 older Coloradans who get regular visits from the nonprofit. The organization's goal is to use volunteers to help with errands and chores, along with combating loneliness with social visits. 

"We like to create connections between people of different generations," said Jake Dresden, metro Denver director.  

According to Dresden, more than 40 new older Coloradans have joined the program each month so far this year with many more inquiring. 

To keep up with that increase in demand, the organization needs at least 100 more volunteers. 

"We always feel like volunteers get just as much out of their interactions or they wouldn't do it," Dresden said.  

That feeling is why Feustel makes the drive to Holliday's senior living facility each week and often writes her a new poem before he walks through the doors. 


"They say the true joy comes from seeing joy in others, helping bring joy to others, and that's what you do in this," he said.  

In the pursuit of a well-lived life, he knows relationships are invaluable. His relationship with Holliday is one he'll cherish forever.  

"You'll get a friend, a connection and a piece of humanity when you do it," Feustel said.  

You can learn more about A Little Help or sign up to volunteer on the organization's website.  

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