There are lots of opportunities where you can make a huge difference to older people in your community. Here are a few opportunities where you can support older people:
The British Red Cross
The British Red Cross are looking for volunteers for their ‘Support at Home’ service which helps people on a short term basis who may need some support and help when they are first discharged from hospital. This could include collecting from hospital on the day of discharge then taking them home, or helping people settle back in at home, shopping or befriending: full training is given and as a trained volunteer you can have the rewarding experience of helping others remain independent in their own homes. Could you spare a few hours to help support someone in need? Call Red Cross Support at Home on 01823 273707, or visit: http://www.redcross.org.uk/What-we-do/Health-and-social-care/Independent-living/Support-at-home
The Cinnamon Trust
The Cinnamon Trust is a national network of over 15,000 community service volunteers has been established to provide practical help when any aspect of day-to-day pet care poses a problem – for example, walking the dog for a housebound owner.
A national fostering service is provided for pets whose owners face a spell in hospital – volunteers take pets into their own homes and supply love and care in abundance until owner and pet can be reunited. For more information please call 01736 757 900 or visit: http://www.cinnamon.org.uk
Alzheimer’s Society’s Side by Side project
Could you help someone with dementia to do the things they love? From going for a stroll in the park, to joining an art class together, being a Side by Side volunteer is a flexible way to volunteer your time and helps people with dementia to keep doing the things we take for granted. This extra support can make it easier for people with dementia, who might sometimes feel isolated or find it difficult to leave their homes, remain active and feel part of their local community.
Alzheimer’s Society are looking for Side by Side volunteers in Mendip. Full training and support will be given. If you are interested, please call Katherine at the Alzheimer’s Society on 01458 251541 for an informal chat.
Somerset Sight Volunteering Service
Volunteering Visiting Service Somerset Sight has offered a Volunteer visiting Service to visually impaired people since 1997. There is a significant increased risk of depression, loneliness and isolation for people with sight loss. The Volunteer Visiting Service aims to support people to continue to live independently and reduce these risks through the regular company and help of a trained, police checked, local volunteer. The service currently supports approximately 150 people across Somerset.
Volunteers visit people in their own homes or in residential/care homes providing practical and emotional support to enable people to manage their sight loss more effectively and to help them to continue to live independently.
If you are interested in Volunteering: For more information please contact one of the Co-ordinators of the service: Claire Packwood, Northern Somerset. Direct Line: 01643 708382 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Sandra Harris, Southern Somerset. Direct Line: 01823 325785 or email email@example.com Tel: 01823 333818 Fax: 01823 323566 http://www.somersetsight.org.uk
Home Library Service and Befriending
Do something amazing. Volunteer. Would you like to share your love of reading with someone who is housebound and deliver library books to people in their own homes? Royal Voluntary Service is a charity and will provide full training. Contact the local Coordinator Kirsty on 07920-250834 or email her on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Active and In Touch Befriending
Active and In Touch Frome is looking for volunteer befrienders to visit and help people who have become isolated or out of touch with the community around them. The work we do is so rewarding, and such a benefit to those we can help. As a volunteer you do not need to commit much – it may be as a few hours every month. Training given.
If you would like to find out more by contact Active and In Touch on 07572854029 or via Somerset You can Do on 01278 664180
Call in Time – weekly ‘friendship calls’ for the over 60s
‘Call in Time’ is looking for volunteers.‘Call in Time’ is a free public telephone befriending service run by Age UK. It matches volunteers with older members of the public. Not having someone to talk to regularly can be lonely and isolating, particularly if you’re used to sharing your home and time with others. A friendly, weekly, 30-minute chat on the phone can make all the difference.
The calls are friendship calls and are not for counselling or bereavement support.
While Age UK are waiting to find a suitable match for an older member of the public, they carry out regular, short Good Day Calls with them, to make sure they don’t feel ignored. There is a criteria for example people need to be over 60, live alone or be a full time carer and be able to hear clearly over the phone. Telephone 0800 434 6105 or find out more on their website http://www.ageuk.org.uk/health-wellbeing/loneliness/sign-up-for-telephone-befriending/
Contact the Elderly
Contact the Elderly’s monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties are a lifeline of friendship for lonely people over 75. Each older person is collected from their home by a volunteer driver and taken to a volunteer host’s home for the afternoon. They bring people of all ages together, develop fulfilling friendships and support networks, and give everyone involved something to look forward to each month. In Mendip the service currently runs in Frome, Glastonbury,Shepton Mallet and Wells with plans for Street.
If you know or work with the older person you are referring, you can make a full referral via our online form. Once we have received the referral we will then be in touch with the older person directly. Please ensure you have the older person’s permission to refer them as well as letting them know Contact the Elderly will be in touch with them. See link below if you would like to refer someone or to go to a tea party.
Please contact to find out more or if you are interested in volunteering.
Helen Kerr-Bridge 01225 873812