Charity uses shock tactics to highlight elderly abuse

LONDON - Help the Aged is using shocking images in a direct mail and inserts appeal to raise funds to help half-a-million older people who face potential abuse.

The mailing tells the fictional story of George who, as a young man, served as a Royal Engineer in the 43rd Wessex Infantry Division during the Second World War. He was tethered, beaten, kicked and burned, but refused to talk. However, George's abuse did not happen in 1944, but in 2004 at the hands of his "carer".

Some 400,000 packs are being door-dropped by the Royal Mail with inserts also placed in the Mail on Sunday and Radio Times asking for a £12 donation. The campaign was created by Joshua.

Help the Aged has teamed up with specialist charity Action on Elder Abuse, which provide a helpline offering support, advice and information to the abused, their carers, their family and friends. Monies raised will go towards funding and developing the helpline and other services to support the hundreds of thousands of older people who suffer on a daily basis.

Rachael Childs, health and social care policy officer for Help the Aged said: "Older people have the right to live free from violence, abuse and neglect in their own homes and care settings. This appeal signals the start of an integrated programme to tackle such atrocities."

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