Modbury Caring set up the Befriending Service three years ago in response to needs identified by Heath Centre staff. Modbury Health Centre covers a large rural community which, as well as Modbury town, includes more than a dozen widely spread villages and hamlets.
Public transport to and from the villages is increasingly poor and this has a considerable impact on people’s ability to take part in normal every day social interaction. Those with no personal transport of their own, who have had to give up or are prevented from driving, due to health or disability, can become more and more socially isolated.
The Befriending service aims to help people in lonely and isolated conditions by matching them up with a volunteer Befriender, who visits regularly. They may visit just for conversation or for shared activities, to accompany someone on a short walk or specific event, or to take them on an outing; e.g. to town, a garden centre, a coffee shop, or to the coast.
Some examples of current befriending situations are:-
- A housebound client with mobility problems, really enjoys talking about activities like baking and gardening which she used to enjoy, still liking to swap recipes.
- A client with loss of sight takes great pleasure from outings in the car where the befriender describes the outlook and landmarks.
- A client whose befriender comes from the same town, enjoys reminiscing on earlier times in the town’s development.
- A client keen on walking, but feeling more confident walking with the befriender and enjoying the company and conversation.
Feedback from clients is very rewarding. We know that it can be a very positive and stimulating experience to know that a friend will be visiting regularly and this is something which people really look forward to.
Need a friend? Perhaps you, a friend or relative might benefit from regular visits from a befriender.
Perhaps you might become a Befriender – contact Sheila Harrison, Tel: 07554 997140 Email: email@example.com
or Drop In at the Modbury Parish Office, by the Co-op. from 11am -12noon on Wednesdays