We all have times in our lives when we need a little extra help: during an illness, in an emergency, as we grow older, when someone dies, when someone is recently home from hospital, or becomes a single parent. Having a ‘Good Neighbour’ to call on, will make life easier. “Good Neighbours” schemes are formed by groups of volunteers with time to spare to offer a helping hand to someone in their community.
In these challenging times these schemes are being relied on more and more. In Shropshire, the majority of people over 65 live at home, with no help or social care. Many older people live in social isolation. When help is not available, even simple tasks can become increasingly difficult, and this can lead to deterioration of health, independence and well-being. Good Neighbours Schemes really help to bring communities together and help to maintain people’s independence.
Help offered by a Good Neighbours Scheme may include:
- Visiting and befriending
- Help in the garden
- Writing letters.
- Accompanying people to the doctors or hospital etc.
- Local Transport
- Changing light bulbs
- Sitting for carers
- Collecting prescriptions, shopping
- Changing library books
- Giving someone a ‘Good Morning’ call
- Dog walking
Everyone involved benefits from Good Neighbours Schemes, from the people who use the service, to the volunteers themselves. They allow new people moving into an area to get involved with their community and meet new people. They connect communities and generations together. All volunteers' skills are really valued and strong friendships are formed.
Shropshire RCC’s Wise & Well Team supports the Association of Shropshire Good Neighbours Schemes. There are currently ten Good Neighbours Schemes across Shropshire. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer or know someone who would benefit from a Good Neighbour, please contact the Wise and Well Team to find out if there is a Good Neighbours Scheme in your area or how to start one.
Start a Good Neighbours Scheme in your communitymore
Shropshire RCC’s Wise and Well Team can help you to start a Good Neighbours Scheme in your community.
Everyone involved benefits from Good neighbour Schemes, from the people who use the service, to the volunteers themselves. They allow new people moving into an area to get involved with their community and meet new people. They connect communities and generations together. All volunteers' skills are really valued and strong friendships are formed.
A Good Neighbour Scheme will help others and enhance your community by improving the neighbourly spirit and goodwill. However, comments from other volunteers show that volunteering can be a very rewarding experience:
- It can be good fun.
- Help you make new friends and it can help against feelings of isolation.
- You are doing something really useful that won’t get done without your help.
- You can gain a sense of achievement and feel part of a team.
- Learn new skills and develop new interests.
The Wise and Well Team will help you to set up your new Good Neighbours Scheme.
Provide help to recruit volunteers, support the committee to agree the scope of the service you wish to offer, publicise the scheme, help you to prepare Volunteer Welcome Packs, arrange Data Barring Service (CRB) checks for your volunteers, source appropriate insurance cover and help to launch the Scheme locally. The team then offer ongoing support including an annual get together with other Good Neighbours Schemes to share ideas and tips.
If you would like to establish a Good Neighbours Scheme in your community then please get in touch.
Volunteers are invited to start new Good Neighbours Schemes – training will be provided.
Please contact Daphne on firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message on 01743 342161.