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Jeremy Goss named Aviva "Friendliest Friendlies" ambassador

30 July 2019

Norwich City's upcoming pre-season friendlies against Atalanta and Toulouse will kickstart Aviva's campaign to bring 10,000 people in Norwich together to tackle loneliness.

As research shows that 46% of people in Norwich suffer from loneliness or know someone who has, Aviva has brought on board City legend Jeremy Goss to be its ‘Friendliest Friendlies’ ambassador.

For the Canaries' pre-season games against Atalanta and Toulouse, Aviva has given away 500 pairs of tickets to competition winners who nominated someone who might be feeling lonely and wouldn’t normally get to go to a game.

As ambassador, Jeremy Goss will meet the winners at Aviva’s specially created sharing pod outside Carrow Road.  Here, Jeremy will also be joined by organisations, charities and Aviva volunteers who will be on-hand to speak fans about the issue of loneliness in the region.

And the competition has highlighted the extent of the issue with some important stories, including:

  • A 92-year-old Nan who recently lost her husband and feels isolated and lonely
  • A Dad who stopped going after developing an eye condition and was unable to see the game properly
  • A fan with learning difficulties who can become nervous in social situations

Norwich is known for being one of the friendliest cities in the UK, but research from Aviva reveals that 76% of people in the region believe that loneliness and social isolation is a significant issue that affects people in Norwich.  Surprisingly, just 20% said they know of any local support services.

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Commenting on the Friendliest Friendlies, Jeremy Goss [pictured above] said: “Norwich is a fantastic place and one of the UK’s friendliest cities. Despite this, 46% of the people said they or someone they know locally have felt the effects of loneliness and social isolation.

“It’s about time this changed, and what better way to bring everyone together than by watching our region’s favourite sport? Aviva has invited 500 people to bring someone along to these games – someone who might be feeling lonely.

“Preventing loneliness is a subject I’m passionate about so this is a perfect fit. I’m proud to be part of what could be the Friendliest Friendlies ever!”

Tom Daniell, Retail Marketing Director from Aviva, said: “It’s fantastic that Norwich City legend Jeremy Goss has joined us to help tackle loneliness in Norwich. As a business with proud roots in the region, we want to use our voice to tackle the issue – something that’s all too common.

“The Friendliest Friendlies is just the start of our ‘Norwich Together’ initiative which will look to bring on board like-minded organisations who have a desire to have an impact on this growing issue.

“Just 20% of people locally know about any support groups for loneliness. That’s not enough. More needs to be done to make sure people know what support is available. No one in Norwich should feel alone, so let’s tackle loneliness in Norwich together.”

Ben Kensell, Norwich City’s Chief Operating Officer said: “We’re very proud as a Club to be associated with Aviva on this ‘Norwich Together’ campaign. This impacts our whole community, and we have a responsibility to champion this in every way possible. Everybody at the Club feels strongly about this, and our friendly matches against Atalanta and Toulouse will be the first opportunity for us to support Aviva on this cause”.

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