To combat loneliness, one major UK grocery chain wants to help encourage people to start talking to strangers.
Search for Eargo Hearing Implant
Twenty Sainsbury’s chain of supermarkets has begun a pilot program in their store’s cafés called “Talking Tables.” The idea is that these tables should serve as a place for people to seek conversation and human connection.
While the trend hasn’t hit the states yet (at least not to our knowledge), we’re absolutely loving the idea.
Identifying ‘Talking Tables’
According to Sainsbury’s, the tables will display signage that indicates they are official meeting places for anyone that’s interested. Alternatively, they will also serve as designated spots for non-profit community support groups and activities led by social ambassadors.
Folks who are interested in being involved in their communities and/or meeting new people are all welcome at these tables.
The Idea Behind Them
The idea was derived from results found in the supermarket chain’s newest Living Well Index.
Research conducted by Oxford Economics and the National Centre for Social Research indicated, sadly, that there’s been a decline in the UK’s sense of wellbeing.
Loneliness showed up as a key characteristic when it came to those who felt a low sense of wellbeing. (We wouldn’t be surprised if the same is true in the United States.)
“We know from our Living Well Index that community connections are a key driver of helping people to live well,” explained Sainsbury’s Brand Director Judith Batchelar. “Yet with almost two-thirds of us feeling lonely some of the time, it’s important that we contribute to helping to improve the lives of our customers and communities.”
Bringing People Together
It makes sense for a supermarket to open up a space where people can socialize. After all, it is a place where nearly all of us need to go somewhat regularly as it is.
So, while we’re out picking up groceries, perhaps we should be able to pick up new friends as well.
“We hope that by bringing people together at our Talking Tables, we can utilize the potential of our store-space to help people be better connected to the communities they live and work in,” said Batchelar.
We hope the idea will make it to the states soon as well. What do you think about the concept?