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Loneliness and social isolation are more common than you think and for many are closely linked to remaining independent and enjoying good physical and mental health.

Older lady enjoying company

“Currently, a million people over 65 feel lonely ‘often’ or ‘always’and 3.7 million people live alone, many with no means of getting out and about.” (English Longitudinal Study on Ageing)

Our befriending services offer companionship and support to older people who are lonely or isolated, provide a link to the outside world and can act as a gateway to other services and support.

All of our home visiting befriending services are suspended during the current Coronavirus retrictions, and these services have been temporarily reconfigured to provide telephone befriending.
If your are interested in accessing our telephone befriending support, please contact our Coronavirus Advice Line.


Befriending involves matching an older person with a volunteer befriender who can visit for a cuppa, friendly conversation and a listening ear on a regular basis. All of our volunteer befrienders undergo an enhanced DBS check and are required to provide satisfactory references as part of our recruitment process.

Where is Befriending available?

Our home visit befriending services are available to residents of Northwest Leicestershire and Rutland.

Additionally, in Rutland we have a specialist befriending service supporting those affected by cancer. This service is available to anyone aged 18 and over.

Is Befriending free of charge?

Yes. We are kindly supported by funders, including the Big Lottery and Macmillan, which means we can offer you the service at no cost.

How can I access this service?

You will simply need to make contact with our staff member who coordinates befriending or mentoring in your area. Their details are below:

For befriending in North West Leicestershire

Please contact Donna Watson on 01530 833 000 between 9am and 5pm on Wednesday and Thursday.

You can also email

For befriending in Rutland

Please contact Yvonne Rawlings on 01572 770324 between 8.30am and, Monday to Thursday .

You can also email

For cancer specific befriending in Rutland

Please contact Elaine Rootham on

01572 823 942 or 07711 325 517 between 08:30am and 4:30pm, Monday to Friday.

You can also email