In our fast moving world, elderly people tend to be excluded from the events of everyday life. They become more sensitive and vulnerable. They find it difficult to come to terms with the passing of the years, the loss of personal relationships, loneliness, illness and the frequent role changes within the family. Old people are often left to their own resources in crisis situations, with nobody to call on if they feel exposed, or if they have suicidal impulses. They miss attention, search for something to hold on to and are in need of human contact.
The DélUtán (AfterNoon) Foundation (established in 1998) is operating a telephone help-line for the elderly. The toll-free line is available every day of the year including holidays and it can be reached from any locality in the country free of charge. The anonymous callers can receive the important information that they need and also enjoy the benefits of shared thoughts, empathy and confidentiality. We have at DelUtan thirty-five well trained volunteer counsellors, who do this demanding work, like the charity's management, without remuneration.
The DelUtan Foundation is not affiliated with any religious organization or political party.
The older people in need can express their thoughts, unpleasant feelings or doubts which have often been hidden even from themselves. They do not have to face the listener whose body language may imply to them criticism or judgment. Searching for the right words, finding previously unidentified connections stimulate progress and can provide a secure base for the caller.
Beyond the telephone help-line, DélUtán is always ready to face new challenges and to address newly emerging needs, namely that there is now a significant number of middle-aged above 40-45 year old who are also in need of life-style guidance and support. This age group is becoming isolated in several respects: perhaps because of unemployment they can no longer belong to a community at the workplace, they have little chance of finding a new job, the possibility of making new contacts has diminished, and their family life has become insecure. Their children may have grown up and left, their relationship with spouse or partner is disintegrating or stagnating and they suffer from lack of self esteem.
In order to help them get over this state, which can often culminate in a crisis, since 2005 we have invited them to become clients of DélUtán. We offer a foothold for these people, who are not old in terms of age, but find themselves in a situation, feeling superfluous and written off by society.
In Hungary there are lots of different help lines for different layers of the society: organizations to help children and young people, cancer patients, LGBT people, drug addicts, alcoholics, or people in crisis. These people all have their own telephone lines where they can get help on the phone or personally. However, people between 18 and 40 cannot get mental help if they are 'only' unhappy, disappointed, desperate, if they 'only' want to ventilate their confused emotions, or discuss their problems anonymously with somebody. Hence we launched an online e-mail and chat service in in 2011 for this particular age group.
The extended activities now include free consultation on legal matters and patient rights, free computer skills training for seniors, face to face psychological counseling and the operation of several clubs to provide a meeting place for the elderly.
As its newest development, DélUtán launched a web site „TársasTér” in 2015. The goal is to provide online web based dating service to the socially vulnerable, isolated people above age 40 and people living with disabilities (primary physically disabled, blind and partially sighted, deaf and hard of hearing and Holocaust survivors) to find friendship and/or romance that would assist them to establish solid and real connections; easing the isolation and loneliness of the target group and thus improving the quality of their life.
The helpline can be called seven days a week, included all holidays, from 18 to 21 o'clock, anonymously and free of charge. It can be reached from every single town or village of Hungary.
We won the Civil Organization of the year in 2006 and we were awarded by SozialMarie in 2010.