Befriending

Quotes from clients
“Finding out about befrienders has made such a difference to me.”“I look forward to my befriender’s visit and it gives me something to look forward to. It brightens up my day.

The purpose of the scheme is to reduce loneliness and isolation among older people living at home in Monifieth who are socially isolated because of illness, disability or some difficulties in their life. The scheme also offers a befriending service for people in care homes and bereaved people of any age living in Monifieth.

Objectives of befriending

  • To enhance the quality of the person’s life
  • To support and promote his/her welfare
  • To provide direct support, to alleviate the pressures for families who care for older relatives at home
  • To provide volunteers who will encourage more involvement in the community

Our volunteer befrienders undergo screening and initial training, attend monthly volunteer meetings, receive ongoing support and supervision, and additional ad-hoc training.  They spend time getting to know the client and provide company and friendship in a way that suits their particular circumstances.  Visits are normally once a week, for approximately 2 hours.

Befriending is: spending time together regularly, giving individual attention and support, helping people to help themselves, being a good listener, helping to reduce social isolation, and having fun.

Befriending is NOT: trying to solve the client’s problems, making judgements about lifestyle and behaviour, counselling or therapy, being a homehelp or a driver, feeling responsible for the client’s decisions or actions, giving advice that is not asked for, or creating a dependency on you.

Some of the positive changes that can happen when someone is befriended are: self confidence is raised, trust is built, isolation is reduced, independence is increased for the client, involvement in new activities within their own community is increased, decision-making is promoted so the client can ask for help from more appropriate places or people, and relationships with family/carers/other professionals can improve.

We also hold social events throughout the year allowing clients and volunteers to meet up regularly to enjoy social activities together.