Befriending Is Hope - BBC Interview

Rushcliffe Community & Voluntary Service

Published: November, 2021

 

Mary talking to Helen her befriender

Mary talking to Helen her Befriender

 

 

BBC East Midlands Today met with Mary and Helen, who were matched through our Befriending Service. Mary talked about how vital the Rushcliffe CVS Befriending Service is to her and Helen spoke about how positive it is to volunteer. Due to copyright issues, we can’t show the interview, but below is the full transcript. It makes for powerful and thought-provoking reading.

 

Anne Davies, BBC News presenter
A service that aims to support lonely and isolated people in the community is seeking more volunteers. The South Nottinghamshire Befriending service started at the beginning of the pandemic and has been described as a lifeline for those in need. Well, now the scheme has been so successful that they are actually looking to expand it to make a difference to more people than ever and Sarah Teal has more.

Sarah Teale, News reporter/presenter for BBC East Midlands Today

Meeting face to face for the first time. 74-year-old Mary meets up with volunteer Helen Turner who’s been ringing her every week over the last 16 months. Helen is a volunteer with the South Notts Befriending service which started at the beginning of the pandemic to give support to vulnerable and isolated people. It’s been a Godsend to Mary.

Mary, Befriending Service user

It means a hell of a lot to me, I was very lonely and isolated. Yeah, it made me feel though I had a purpose. Because when you sit here on your own all the time, especially at night, you know you’re wondering, you know. Is it worth it? I really, really look forward to it.

Sarah Teale, News reporter/presenter for BBC East Midlands Today

This service is run by Rushcliffe Community and Voluntary Service, which also offers help with shopping and transport to COVID, vaccinations, and essential medical appointments. The befriending service has received funding from NHS Charities Together which will allow them to expand.

Because they’re increasing the work they do. The befriending service now needs more volunteers. All you have to do is commit to an hour once a week or once a fortnight and you really could make a difference to someone like Mary. Who struggled with loneliness and isolation.

Carole Green, Operations Manager Rushcliffe CVS

It’s still needed as much now as it has ever has been. In fact, what we found is that some people have lost the confidence to go out. I had an enquiry the other day from a gentleman who wants somebody to take him for a walk. He can’t go out on his own. He’s 92 but he would just like somebody to give him just that little bit of confidence just so she can have a little walk to the end of the street and back.

Helen, Befriending volunteer

It’s been a really positive experience and I would definitely encourage it. Anybody who likes chatting and enjoys communicating with people to come forward and to consider it.

Sarah Teale, News reporter/presenter for BBC East Midlands Today
And with this being National Befriending week, there’s never been a better time to volunteer. Sarah Teale, BBC East Midlands Today, Nottinghamshire.

A big thank you to Mary and Helen for giving up their time and thank you BBC East Midlands Today.

To volunteer all you have to do is commit to an hour once a week or once a fortnight and you really could make a difference to someone like Mary. Please get in touch with us from our contact form. Together We Can Overcome Isolation.

 

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