The Befriender's Role.



Volunteer Befrienders visit clients in their own homes on a regular basis, whilst working under the guidance of Hand of Solace  Befriending Service.


We recruit our volunteers from all walks of life, all backgrounds and all ages.


Once a Volunteer befriender application form is received the two references are taken up. Befrienders then undertake an Induction and complete a DBS before any introductions are made. All befrienders are DBS checked, provided with induction training and two references are taken up before any introductions are made. They receive on-going training and support


Wherever possible a befriender is matched with an older person who has similar interests. The matching is reviewed regularly and is for a maximum of one year with any one client. Some Volunteers have more than one Client.


The support a befriender gives will depend on the needs of the client. It will include good conversation, but may include the occasional trip out or the opportunity to participate in social activities.


The Befrienders do not replace home helps or carers and do not undertake manual tasks or shopping.


Desirable Qualities

 These include

  • Listening skills

  • Enjoyment of social contact

  • Ability to motivate and encourage others

  • Sense of humour

  • Honest and reliability

  • Patience and understanding

The benefits of being a Volunteer Befriender include opportunities to meet new people, free training and support, increased confidence and self-esteem and the ‘feel good factor’.

We ask volunteers to be willing to give a minimum of one hour of their time per fortnight, for at least one year. Volunteers are asked to attend initial induction training, social events with Clients, and training and support sessions. Volunteers must respect Client Confidentiality and establish and maintain appropriate boundaries. The Project Co Ordinator must be informed of any concerns relating to the client. Volunteers are asked to respect different cultural values and work in a non-discriminatory manner. They are understanding, rather than judgmental about a client’s situation and circumstances.