Devon Work Hubs show their support for Loneliness Awareness Week (12-18 June).
Loneliness Awareness Week is run by the Marmalade Trust, the UK’s leading loneliness charity, and is dedicated to raising awareness of loneliness and getting people talking about it, across the UK and beyond.
The theme of this year’s Loneliness Awareness Week is “Connection Matters” – and connections are precisely what Work Hubs provide. Studies have shown that working from home, or running your own business from home can feel isolating at times, but Work Hubs are great places to meet likeminded people, make business contacts, and form friendships.
A number of Work Hubs will be organising special events throughout the week to help bring their members together and encourage people to talk more openly about loneliness.
Among the Work Hubs taking part are The Tribe coworking space for female entrepreneurs in Totnes. On Thursday 15 June, The Tribe is inviting local businesswomen to join them for a walk around Dartington and a bring-your-own picnic lunch. Contact Stacey@thetribecoworking.co.uk for further details.
Stacey Sheppard, founder of The Tribe, said: “Being an entrepreneur and working for yourself offers so many benefits but what a lot of people don’t realise is that occupational loneliness can be a real issue. You’re often immersed in your business, working long hours, dealing with a lot of stress and making difficult decisions. It can feel like nobody around you really understands you, how you work or what you do and that can feel lonely and can eventually lead to burnout. Surrounding yourself with other like-minded people and building real connections with people who get it is so important. Coworking spaces are the perfect place to tap into that entrepreneurial community.”
The Generator Hub in Exeter has a packed schedule for the week with a networking walk on Tuesday (13 June), Cocktail/mocktail making workshop on Thursday (15 June) and drinks on Friday (16 June). For more information about the events email email@example.com.
Liz Finnie, Director of Generator Hub, said: “Having previously been a freelance and remote science editor, I know first-hand that working from home is lonely. Now as a cowork space director I have seen, and so often been told, the transformative impacts that coworking can have in combating loneliness. Alongside the normal cowork services, we listen, guide, connect and foster meaningful relationships (social and professional), all within an environment where everyone feels a sense of belonging. Of course everyone has different ‘contact’ requirement levels, so it’s completely at a members discretion whether they get involved in our biscuit clubs, netwalks, games nights, Friday drinks, charity events and more. But just stepping out of your ‘lonely comfort zone’ for just one day a week can bring a whole new dimension to you as a person and to your work-life balance – many new doors will certainly open.”
Kim Diep, a Software Engineer at Butternut Box, regularly uses the Generator Hub. She said: “For me loneliness doesn’t just mean being physically alone. In fact, loneliness can appear in all sorts of ways. I remember years ago, despite being around many people in a big city, I still felt lonely and that no one would understand who I am and my feelings inside. Fast forward a few years, I found myself moving to Exeter, I didn’t know anyone from the city before I came, so I decided to start working from a coworking space called The Generator Hub. It’s buzzing here, I feel welcome and part of a cowork family; I have seen a boost in my self-confidence and mental health. People genuinely care.”
CoWorking Devon in Buckfastleigh will hold the first of its monthly CoWalks with a lunchtime walk to Sharp Tor on Tuesday (13 June), providing an opportunity to promote collaboration and wellbeing. Meeting at the office at 12.15pm they plan to gather at Bel Tor Carpark at 12.30pm, where the group will set off on the walk to the peak of Sharp Tor before heading back to the Work Hub for 2pm.
Isla Farr, Hub manager at CoWorking Devon in Buckfastleigh, said: “It’s easy to feel lonely, even when life is full of being busy, running a business, being part of a family or just the everyday stresses of normal life! Coming to a coworking space gives the opportunity to just be, in a stress-free environment centred around productivity and community where you can meet and chat with other like-minded folk.”
The Work:Space at Teignmouth Library is hosting a coffee, cake and coworking day on Wednesday (14 June) from 9am to 5pm. The special event is a chance for freelancers, remote workers and small businesses to network at the flexible workspace while enjoying coffee, cake and company.
Rachel Payne, Business Development Manager for Libraries Unlimited, said: “It is well established that coworking is a great way to combat loneliness, particularly in the post-Covid era of flexi-working and the tendency for businesses to have dispersed offices. This is a great opportunity to come and see what one of our spaces has to offer and meet some new faces.”
To find out more about the event on 14 June, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or to book direct please call 0333 2342123 or email: email@example.com. Desks are charged at £10 per day.
"A fabulously stylish space which smacks of contemporary creative muses, coupled with all the comforts an office should have - coffee, tea, fridge, WiFi and a working printer. Its a warm, light space in a delightful part of the village with plenty of space in the car parks and very easy to travel to."