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Telephone or Remote Befriender

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Telephone or Remote Befriender
MHA Communities Harrogate
Description of the role:

Can you spare an hour or two each week to help an older person feel less lonely?

We are looking for caring and committed volunteers to help support an older person who lives independently in their own home with regular telephone or video calls.

The aim of telephone befriending is to reduce feelings of social isolation and loneliness. Our volunteers are required to ring an older person to check on them and build a friendship. One half hour call seems really simple, but having someone to talk to and someone to listen, could really make a difference to an older person. It could be that you are the only person they speak to that day, or even that week.

Skills and qualities needed for the role:

We are looking for people with the following skills and qualities:

• Age 18 and over
• Good listening skills
• Patience, empathy and understanding of the needs of older people
• Ability to keep records of calls made
• Flexible, reliable and punctual
• Clear sense of personal boundaries and confidentiality
• Able to provide non-judgemental support
• Willingness to engage with training and development

Practical information:

Telephone Befrienders may support one or several older people with a call once or twice a week. Average time spent is 1 - 2 hours per week, but some Befrienders commit more time. The quality of the conversation is more important than the time spent. Full training will be given and the Befriender will keep a log of calls to discuss regularly with their Manager/Supervisor.

Applicants will be asked to complete an Application Form providing two referees and apply for a DBS check at our expense.


Additional Information
DBS check needed: Yes
Driving licence needed: No
Car owner: No
Open to: Age 17+
Is this role wheelchair accessible?: Yes
BayTree Resource Centre
4 Tynwald Hill
North Yorkshire
LS17 5PU
Last updated: 10.12.2020
Organisation Information

MHA Communities Harrogate is a new service in Harrogate to support and connect older people who continue to live independently in their own homes and enable them to live later life well.

Working closely with our existing care and retirement services in Harrogate, MHA Berwick Grange and MHA Martin Grange, as well as Wesley Centre in the heart of Harrogate and the wider Methodist Circuit, our aim is to reduce social isolation and loneliness by supporting older people in the community with telephone or video befriending by trained volunteers, digital activities and helping members to get online and stay connected with their communities.

Membership is open to any older person in Harrogate who would like to make new social connections and try out new activities or benefit from the support of a Volunteer Befriender.

MHA has been supporting older people in Harrogate since 1946 when it opened its second care home Berwick Grange and this was followed by the opening of Martin Grange retirement apartments in 2006. The addition of a new MHA Community in Harrogate offers a complete and exciting service for all people in later life in the local community, including our residents in care and retirement living, as well as church members in the Nidd Valley Methodist Circuit, enabling them to keep active, engaged and enjoying social contact.

For over 30 years, MHA has been running Communities (formerly Live at Home schemes) across the country, which have helped tackle loneliness and isolation for over 12,000 older people who live independently in their own home. The local schemes offer a wide variety of services for their members ranging from exercise classes, craft activities, lunch clubs and men’s groups to support with shopping trips, days out, short holidays and befriending, depending on what members would like to do.

Charity number: 1083995

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