A MAN who has been described as a ‘lifeline’ for elderly people across the borough has been nominated for a Proud of Barnsley Award for his work and dedication to help eradicate loneliness in the elderly.

Dan Connelly may have only started his role as a social inclusion worker for Age UK in October but already he has made an impact on his local community.

Working with elderly and retired residents in the town centre, Dan helps them to overcome isolation and has taught many how to video call their families throughout the pandemic.

“I worked in an office for more than 20 years but unfortunately I was made redundant due to the pandemic,” said Dan, 40, from Lancaster Street in the town centre.

“I saw the opportunity with Age UK come up and I thought ‘why not’ and went for it – I am so glad I did as the job has changed my life.

“I really love working with the residents every day. Isolation can cause a lot of problems and for some of the people, I am the only person they see in person every day.

“I have really enjoyed helping residents to learn more about technology and helping them to connect via video call.

“The pandemic has been hard on everyone but I know how hard it must have been for people who are on their own and can’t see their family.”

Dan has created a walking football team to help encourage exercise and activity and also runs not one, but two children’s football teams.

He has been praised for his work, and has earned a Proud of Barnsley nomination in Community Hero category.

“I honestly just come into work each day, and I love helping people,” he added. “I feel shocked but I am happy that I have helped to make a difference in people’s lives.”

If you would like to nominate someone for a Proud of Barnsley Award, email ch@barnsley-chronicle.co.uk.