Alone No More – from youth loneliness to making a difference

14 June 2024

  • Blog

This week is Loneliness Awareness Week, a time to highlight the importance of loneliness, isolation and its impact on people, including young people.

This year’s theme is Random Acts of Connection, aimed at encouraging everyone to increase those simple, everyday moments of connection which help us feel happier, less lonely and increase our sense of belonging,

Here, activitist Molly Taylor explains what led her to set up Alone No More, an initiative dedicated to ensuring no young person faces loneliness alone.

Alone No More founder Molly Taylor.

This blog first appeared on the Campaign to End Loneliness website in August 2023.

At the age of 21, I faced the stark reality of loneliness for the very first time, writes Molly. However, this solitude evolved into a chronic condition that took over my life, becoming a detriment to my overall wellbeing. From eating alone to days without contact with any friend, loneliness took over my life. This downward spiral led to a severe mental health crisis, where support seemed out of reach and hard to find.

During those challenging days, I reached out to national helplines in search of support, yet often faced discouragingly long waits or dismissive responses. Advisors frequently mistook my symptoms for depression or anxiety, inadvertently steering me away from the specialised support I truly needed.

An estimated two million young people are experiencing chronic loneliness.

My perspective shifted when I encountered the Belong Collective at UK Youth. This network, centred building a cross-sector network and youth advisory board addressing loneliness, illuminated the fact I wasn’t alone in this struggle. Suddenly, my personal journey with loneliness had significance and I felt heard and seen. This was also my first time ever accessing youth work, an experience that not only restored my autonomy but also empowered me to be an agent of change.

Since then, along with fellow Belong Collective members, our impact has been remarkable. From hosting webinars during Loneliness Awareness Week to shaping loneliness research through the We Choose to Be Here report in 2022, collaborating on workshops with Youth Focus: North East, influencing national policy discussions through parliamentary involvement at an All-Party Parliamentary Group with Stuart Andrew, loneliness minister, and even being featured on BBC politics – we’ve been at the forefront of change.


My inspiration to establish Alone No More comes from my own lived experience. Interacting with other young people daily through my activism revealed everyone has felt lonely at some point in their life. While current estimates suggest about two million young people experience loneliness, I’m convinced this figure is an understatement.

It’s clear sharing our stories and experiences is crucial in recognising the symptoms and bridging the resource gap. The lack of accessible and well-defined resources further underscores the urgency, driving me to create a hub for young individuals and organisations alike to collaborate in addressing loneliness.


I envision Alone No More evolving into a Community Interest Company, allowing us to implement tangible solutions for the two million young people battling loneliness. Beyond that, my aspirations for the broader movement against youth loneliness involve fostering cross-collaboration and instead of working in silo, working together. I also hope that one day there is also a targeted helpline specifically for loneliness, so that young people find the support they deserve.

Join us, and let’s shape a future where no young person experiences loneliness alone.

For more details, see Alone No More.

About UK Youth

UK Youth is a leading charity with a vision that all young people are equipped to thrive and empowered to contribute at every stage of their lives. With an open network of more than 8,000 youth organisations and nation partners; UK Youth reaches more than four million young people across the UK and is focused on unlocking youth work as the catalyst of change that is needed now more than ever. To find out more, visit ukyouth.org 

UK Youth is involved in a range of programmes designed to help young people thrive, such as outdoor learning, physical literacy, social action and employability, including Hatch, a youth employability programme run in partnership with KFC. For more on UK Youth’s programmes, see ukyouth.org/what-we-do/programmes

This blog first appeared on the Campaign to End Loneliness website in August 2023.

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