Roy (80) and Kate (37) were first introduced through our Love Your Neighbour programme back in February 2020. With a mutual love of culture and literature the new pals instantly hit it off, and since then they have shared nearly 80 calls and visits and developed a really special friendship along the way.
Being introduced just before the pandemic, Roy and Kate only had the opportunity to meet a few times before the first March lockdown. But as Kate shares, she doesn’t feel like the pandemic negatively impacted their friendship, “Our friendship has blossomed as a result of our weekly phone calls. We regularly chat about all kinds of things, but it is our mutual love of the arts - books, theatre, music, and dance - that really connects us. It has been so wonderful to be able to share recommendations for things to watch, read, and listen to with one another.”
“When I was first introduced to Roy, I felt like I'd met a kindred spirit; we have so many mutual interests and it was obvious to me from the beginning that we would get on. Roy is such a kind and interesting person with so much knowledge and wisdom - I am always grateful that he is so generous in sharing it. Even when our opinions are different, I know that Roy will respect my thoughts and vice versa, and we often have a good old laugh about things (once a story about the transit of a coffin had me in stitches!).”
This was also echoed by Roy, who shared that the thing he finds most rewarding is also their conversations. “We can talk really freely, in spite of the big age difference, our conversations are so nice, they are always highly enjoyable, easy and free following, I really look forward to them!”
Next month will mark two years of friendship between Roy and Kate and as Kate shares, friendships play just as important a role in feeling connected to a place as they do to the people around us. “I feel that my friendship with Roy has made my life a lot richer. Before I met Roy, I didn't necessarily feel settled in Manchester, but he has really helped me to feel at home here, introducing me to previously unexplored parts and telling me all about the history of places. His thoughtfulness, fascinating conversation, and just general wonderfulness has really helped me through all the difficulties of the last two years, and I'm very much looking forward to having more fun trips together in 2022. I would really encourage anyone to get involved in the Love Your Neighbour programme; it is so rewarding - and everyone needs a Roy in their life!”
If you’d like to get to know one of your older neighbours and find out what you might have in common, you can sign up for our Love Your Neighbour programme here.
Posted by Vicky Harrold on Tuesday 1st March 2022
Vicky is Manchester Cares' Programme Coordinator managing our Love Your Neighbour programme.