Age UK Suffolk is no longer able to provide a visiting befriending service although we will continue to support the visiting relationships we already have in place.
We do however continue to provide telephone befriending to older people across the county.
Telephone befriending can help to reduce loneliness and social isolation, and can be rewarding to both the older person and volunteer alike.
How does it work?
Our befriending service is open to older people aged 60 or over (unfortunately we cannot provide a service to older people with a diagnosis of dementia or complex mental health needs).
The service is free and all volunteers are carefully recruited with appropriate checks made. Once a referral is received, a befriending co-ordinator will contact you to discuss the service and find out a bit more about you, such as your interests and hobbies. They will then look to find a suitable volunteer to match you with. The same volunteer will telephone you each week, usually on the same day and often at the same time.
We always check to see if the ‘match’ is working for both you and the volunteer in the early stages, then contact you at regular intervals to see if all is still going well. We can also help to refer you onto other Age UK Suffolk services.
How can I be referred to the telephone befriending scheme?
• You can call and refer yourself
• A relative or friend can call on your behalf
• A health or social work professional can call for you
If you would like more information or to be referred to the befriending service, please call your nearest Co-ordinator using the details below.
Nicola May/Lyn Voller
Phone: 01473 353061/353051
Other Befriending Schemes
We also hold information on other organisations and groups that offer befriending or visiting services across the County, and we may be able to put you in contact with a local scheme if that is your preference.
Can you spare some time to volunteer and befriend an older person?
We are always looking for more people to join our team of volunteers.
Contact:: The Volunteer Office
Phone: 01473 298684