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New funding enables DailyHope phoneline to reopen

18 March 2024

iStock

THE free phone line DailyHOPE has secured fresh funding, which is allowing the service to reopen just six weeks after it closed because of financial difficulties.

The line was created four years ago by the Church of England, the charity Faith in Later Life, and Connections, at Holy Trinity, Claygate, to support older people who lacked access to online worship during national lockdowns (News, 1 May 2020).

Launched in April 2020, it provided prayers, hymns, and reflections. Its closure was announced in the first week of February (News, 9 February). The Archbishop of Canterbury said at the time: “Over these past nearly four years I have been so glad to hear the stories of lives transformed, encouraged, and supported by this telephone line. It is therefore sad that we have to cease this service.”

Faith in Later Life took over the development and ownership of the line last year. On Sunday, its chief executive, Alexandra Drew, confirmed that the service had reopened with immediate effect, thanks to new funding.

She said on Sunday that closing had been “an extremely heart-wrenching decision to make. I know that it’s been a lifeline to many older people, especially those unable to attend church in person and without online access to spiritual comfort. . .

“Amidst letters of thanks, and expressions of sadness at the closure, our prayers that God would yet provide continued, and although the timing wasn’t quite what we might have hoped for, God’s answer has been overwhelming. I’m thrilled to share the news that we have been able to restore DailyHOPE for a further season.”

The charity was looking forward to welcoming new callers, content-providers, and funding partners to continue the service.

Pam Rhodes, the broadcaster, who is an ambassador for Faith in Later Life, said that that the popularity of DailyHOPE was “no wonder” — and that “the thought that this vital service may have been lost to those who value and rely upon it brought real despair. But, now, we’re thankful to God that DailyHOPE has been saved.”

One caller said of the service: “I have found DailyHOPE to be such a blessing in my life, day by day. It encourages me as a Christian, the presenters have become like friends, and the variety of the material on the different options is refreshing.”

The charity is welcoming donations at: faithinlaterlife.org/donate

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