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Cornish woman helps elderly stay connected during UK lockdown

Cornish woman helps elderly stay connected during UK lockdown

Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 2:30pm 29th March 2020.

A woman in Cornwall is helping the elderly keep connected during the UK lockdown by restoring unwanted smartphone devices. 

When Charlotte Pearce lost her much-loved grandmother in August last year, she knew how alone her 87-year-old grandad would feel. Too far away from him to visit on a regular basis, she decided to give him an iPhone so they could stay in touch via video calls.

She said it transformed the remainder of his life - helping him to see his family and friends every day - joining in with days in the garden with his granddaughter and trips to the beach, all from the comfort of his home. He was also able to chat with relatives in Ireland and America. 

When deteriorating health meant moving into a home for respite care, the smartphone went with him.

“He let other residents use it as well and said tapping into the technological world was ‘blooming marvellous’.

“It made a huge difference to him and was brilliant for me and my family too because we could see him and, when he wasn’t looking well, were able to alert paramedics or his carers. It kept us close.”

Charlotte Pearce

Although her grandad passed away in September 2019, Charlotte was determined that other elderly people should enjoy the same connectivity benefits as he had.

She and her partner Louise set up 'Surrounded by Love' on Facebook and began asking friends and relatives to donate redundant devices which were then restored to factory settings.


The latest beneficiaries to receive two iPads are Cornwall Care’s Trevarna and Woodland homes in St Austell.

“Charlotte got in touch to offer them and we couldn’t have been more delighted.

“In the current situation, it’s never been more important for residents to able to keep in touch with loved ones in the outside world and being able to talk to them via video is wonderful.

“I’m sure Charlotte’s grandad would be extremely proud of all that she is doing.”

Andrea Redfern, Cornwall Care’s Employment Engagement and Well-Being Advisor. 

Anyone who has old devices to donate can contact Charlotte through her Facebook page here

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