Befriending services are great way of making sure the elderly don’t feel alone and can reassure carers that can’t always be present that their older family members are safe and well. These services can come in the form of a simple daily telephone call, regular visit, or through group meetings.
Wherever your family member lives in Suffolk there should be an option open to you. We’ve listed 4 options below for you to consider.
Find Local Befriending Services Across Suffolk
Reengage is a volunteer-run service that aims to reduce loneliness in the elderly with monthly social gatherings for small groups of those over 75 that live alone. Free transport is provided to and from the venue by a DBS checked volunteer driver. It is a completely free service and there are currently groups in:
- Bury St Edmunds
If this is something you feel your elderly parent might benefit from, you should visit their website to find the nearest group for them. Regardless on which location is best for them, the contact details are the same and listed below.
Telephone: 07949 706918
If the older person you care for is feeling in need of a good regular chat, especially if they feel lonely or just don’t leave the house much, Independent Age’s volunteers can provide a call or visit. This is a free service that your elderly relative can organize at times to suit them.
Telephone: 0800 319 6789
Independent Age Website
HVC – Halesworth
HVC is a volunteer-lead community support centre based in the centre of Halesworth. Services they offer include a community car service , resource centre, and a home visit befriending scheme. A small number of volunteers visit people in their own homes to assist with basic day-to-day jobs and errand running. This is a completely free service but is limited naturally by availability of volunteers.
If you would like more information on this service they ask that you contact Tracy or Karen at the Volunteer Centre or using the details below.
Telephone: 01986 875600
The Befriending Scheme – Lowestoft
The Befriending Scheme is a Suffolk charity that has 6 local hubs throughout the county. The services at the core of the scheme include regular drop-in-centres and evening out and about groups (trips to the cinema, pub quiz nights etc). However, in Lowestoft they also offer a volunteer befriending scheme.
For their hub services they require a membership (prices) but their volunteer lead befriending scheme is free. Volunteers meet with your elderly relative (‘linked friend’) once a week/fortnight/month, and organised through the Link Co-Ordinator. These sessions can be used for whatever activities your relative would like from as little as a coffee at home to a day out.
Fill out a referral form for one-to-one befriending in Lowestoft
Hope Trust – Felixstowe
A Christian local charity for the over 50s with many events to relieve loneliness and isolation. It allows them to connect to similar people and feel a part of the community they live in. They have a calendar of events on their website.
Telephone: 01394 272592
Hope Trust Website