The team from TLW Solicitors provided training materials and top tips for the Happy at Home volunteers.
Happy at Home South Tyneside is a volunteer-led project that helps elderly and lonely residents by arranging regular home visits to reduce isolation, encourage interaction, and check in on those residents who may not have family members or friends looking out for them and their welfare.
As part of the volunteers’ ongoing development, and to help them provide the best care to their service users, the project provides regular meetings and training on issues that may affect those in the community. At the most recent volunteer meeting, attendees received training and information about scams and fraud that particularly target older and more vulnerable people and were given tips and resources around:
- How to spot when one of their service users may be subject to a scam
- What to do if they suspect a scam targeting a service user
The training was prepared by Shuhag Miah, a Trainee Solicitor in the Scams and Fraud team at TLW Solicitors.
Unfortunately, isolated and elderly people are attractive targets for sophisticated scammers and fraudsters who exploit their relative vulnerability and convince them to part with hard-earned cash through manipulation, impersonation, and confusion.
According to Age UK, around 1 in 12 older people fall victim to scams every year, and the charity believes the number to be, in fact, much higher due to the number of victims who will not be aware that they have been scammed or are ashamed to report it.
If you have elderly or vulnerable friends or family members, even if you think they would be savvy enough not to fall into the scammers’ trap, it is important to be aware of the types of scams targeting older people, as well as to understand the warning signs.
Shuhag Miah, Trainee Solicitor at TLW Solicitors who prepared the training resources, commented:
“It has been a pleasure to work with Happy at Home and equip the volunteers with the tools and tips they need to spot scams and support their service users. Unfortunately, scammers are ruthless and sophisticated; they target the elderly and isolated and prey on their vulnerabilities, so it is great to see a project like Happy at Home helping to prevent scams like these however they can.”
Sarah Spruce, Head of the Scams and Fraud team at TLW Solicitors, commented:
“The work that Happy at Home is doing in the South Tyneside community is crucial, and we are delighted to have been able to provide this training for the volunteers. It can be embarrassing to have been targeted by a scam, but it is important not to feel ashamed and to understand that you are not alone; whether you are elderly or not, there are services that can help.”
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