Telephone Befriending

Rushcliffe Community & Voluntary Service

Our telephone befriending service began because we wanted to keep vulnerable people safe, reassured and socially connected during the Covid-19 pandemic.

It’s quickly grown to become a precious lifeline for many who’d otherwise be lonely and isolated across south Nottinghamshire.

We’re working in partnership with Rushcliffe, Gedling and Broxtowe district councils, so that our befrienders can reach anyone in those areas who’s on their own and would like some contact and support.

Our friendly volunteers will call you once or twice a week to chat about whatever you want, check on your welfare, offer advice and ensure that you have what you need.

This includes directing you to other support which could help you, such as our Transport and Handy Housekeeping services.

You can talk to our befrienders about anything – a shared hobby or interest, memories, what’s in the news or an issue you’d like some help with, such as how to collect a prescription.

Vulnerable and isolated people are directed to us by friends and family, GPs and social services. But if you’re not going out and feel you’d benefit from a comforting chat, you can ask to use the service yourself.

Simply call us on 0115 969 9060 or email


Become a befriender

Why not join our growing band of volunteer befrienders? All you need is yourself and a phone!

We want to reach and support as many people as possible. To do that we need reliable, enthusiastic volunteers who want to take on this enjoyable and rewarding role.

You’ll listen, share experiences and stories with the person you’re getting to know –

building their confidence, improving their wellbeing and helping them to re-engage with the community.

We’d love to hear from you. To become a befriender, call 0115 969 9060 or email


Befriending in action 

Jaimie became an RCVS telephone befriender after being furloughed during the Covid-19 pandemic. The role suited him, because his young daughter has a minor heart issue and he wanted to keep her safe.

“The world has never experienced anything like Covid, and I wanted to give back to those who are vulnerable,” he explains.

Jaimie was put in touch with Ryan, who at 84 is more than twice his age. The two have become firm friends.

“When I received the information for my first call to Ryan, I noticed it was his birthday two days later. I called him again on his birthday and we had a beer each! Over the following weeks I managed to find out about his whole life: jobs, hobbies, and much more.”

Jaimie made a note of some of Ryan’s favourite things. Tripe and onions remind Ryan of his childhood, and he loves Rioja wine with steak. San Miguel beer takes him back to his apartment in Spain which he hasn’t visited for ten years. Ryan also loves sloe gin, which he used to make back in the day.

Armed with this information, Jaimie went on a mission: “I got tripe and onions from the butchers, San Miguel and Rioja from the shops.”

Jaimie even found and picked some sloe berries and made Ryan a big bottle of sloe gin. With these items in hand, and a stay safe picture drawn by his two children, he and his wife drove thirty minutes to deliver the package to Ryan.

“When Ryan noticed what was in it and I introduced myself, his face lit up,” Jaimie recalls. “He couldn’t thank us enough.”

Jaimie left his contact details, and Ryan called to thank him again. Words couldn’t express how much this act of kindness had meant to him. A few days later, a bouquet of flowers arrived on Jaimie’s doorstep from Ryan.

“I think I may have just adopted a new Grandad,” says Jaimie. “And I’m more than happy to do so!”

Jaimie has thoroughly enjoyed his volunteering experience and recommends it to others.

“Volunteering has definitely made me more aware of how many people count on help from others to stay safe and well. Knowing I made a difference to someone’s life during lockdown is the best thing. That’s a feeling money just can’t buy!”

We're passionate believers in the power of volunteering. It changes lives for the better. That's why we encourage and support people to get involved.

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