We are listening - new service lets lonely or struggling residents reach out or rant

A new ‘listening service’ is giving residents who are struggling with isolation, loneliness and stress someone to talk to.

Wednesday, 2nd September 2020, 6:00 am
Listening Ear members (left to right) Dr. Hannah Burman, Angie Angus, Keith Hemmer and Daniel Veti. Picture by FRANK REID

Listening Ear Jarrow was launched at the beginning of 2020 by a group of kindhearted volunteers who wanted to support the community by doing something as simple as just listening.

But sessions ground to a halt as coronavirus restrictions bit in March.

Now the service is launching online, via video conferencing platform Zoom, meaning residents can have a rant, talk about their problems and be heard from a safe environment.

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Listening Ear member Dr. Hannah Burman. Picture by FRANK REID

Listening Ear Jarrow volunteers are fully trained and listen non judgmentally, giving people the chance to talk about what is important for them.

Dr Hannah Burman, who founded the service said: “We had just started to run our listening sessions when lockdown struck.

"It’s been a difficult time for everyone and Listening Ear Jarrow has been no exception. However, we have worked hard to move LEJ to an alternative and safe platform and can now offer sessions online and over the phone.

“We provide a high quality, confidential space where any adult from South Tyneside can feel heard, whatever their circumstances and no matter what the impact of coronavirus on their lives. We know that now, more than ever, our service is needed.”

Listening Ear Jarrow runs for three hours a week and is open to people across South Tyneside.

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