Elderfriends provides a one-to-one befriending service to lonely and socially isolated people across Chesterfield and North East Derbyshire.

It is the need of every single one of us, child or grown-up, to feel wanted, to feel we belong and that we matter to someone else in the world. The Volunteer Centre’s befriending scheme is designed to make sure that happens.

“I have visited several people while on the project all have presented different problems and I have learnt a great deal from each one. I have enjoyed it tremendously. I didn’t realise how many people were lonely. It is nice to give something back to my community.”

Many people benefit from the support of a befriender at a time in their life when they have become socially isolated due to illness or old age. There are many reasons why people become isolated, the virtual extinction of extended family, death of a spouse and dwindling support networks can all increase the feelings of loneliness and social isolation.

“I look forward to my befriender visits, they mean a lot as I don’t know many people in the area. I enjoy talking about the past and it is so much nicer when someone wants to listen”

Volunteer befrienders offer support on a good neighbour basis and their activities can include:

  • Visiting and keeping someone company
  • Listening and chatting
  • Shared leisure activities
  • Accessing wider community activities

If befriending interests you then come and have a chat with someone in The Volunteer Centre or ask us to send you out an application or download one from below. You will receive training, expenses and all the support you need.

As long as you observe organisational policies and procedures and maintain boundaries then being a befriender will be an enjoyable and rewarding experience.

Remember, anyone can volunteer – just a couple of hours a week is all it takes, you just need to be patient, friendly, honest and reliable.

Download the Elderfriends volunteer application form >

Download the Elderfriends referral form >

You can call Elderfriends on 01246 276 777 or email janet@chesterfieldvc.org.uk for more details.
Please note you must be over 16 years old to volunteer with Elderfriends.

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