A COMMUNITY group seeking to tackle loneliness among the area’s most vulnerable is appealing for support.

Blackburn-based Sliding Doors is one of five organisations in the North West region seeking £50,000 of National Lottery funding in the ‘People’s Projects’ competition.

It is on a mission to change the lives of older people and those living with disability with its ‘Open for All’ project.

The Big Lottery Fund, ITV and The National Lottery have teamed up to give the UK public the chance to decide how £3 million of National Lottery funding will be used to make a difference in their local area.

The three projects with the most public votes will receive grants to help them further develop their work to improve the lives of people in their communities.

Sliding Doors runs a thriving social group at Blackburn Rovers Blues Bar, which provides an opportunity for people with disability to get out, create friendships and participate in ‘normal’ life.

Should it win the £50,000 prize, the organisation promises three new schemes all run by people with a disability.

They would be a mobile afternoon tea programme among local residential homes and sheltered housing and a new ‘drop-in hub with activities such as a healthy cooking and lunch club, meditation and movement, music making and creative arts.

The last project would be a weekly tea dance night out.

The founder of Sliding Doors, Julie Astley, said: "Loneliness is awful, it’s sad.

"It’s isolating and it’s completely unnecessary.

“Our most vulnerable people often have the most to give, they just never get a chance to shine.

“Yet, when people realise that they’re not defined by their age or disability, a spark emerges."

Voting opens at 9am today and can be placed at www.thepeoplesprojects.org.uk and is set to close at noon on Monday, April 3.