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Telephone Befriending Service at Derbyshire Carers Association

What is Telephone Befriending?

Our Telephone Befriending service aims to provide a regular friendly phone-call (from a trained Volunteer) for companionship, a listening ear and support to isolated Carers living in Derbyshire (not Derby City) who are in NEED of social contact.

The service is designed to give support and friendly conversation to those Carers who are not able to get out and socialise, they may have lost contact with friends & family or might be unable to leave the person they care for.

Priority will be given to Carers who have little or no social contact and have little or no outlet to have a social chat with someone, due to their caring role and / or other health issues.

What it means to a Carer to receive a Telephone Befriending call:

 “I’m usually running around after everyone else, I have no social life or chance of talking to anyone. It gives me a lift to have somebody ask how I am”
 “I really enjoy my calls from (volunteer), she’s friendly and we get on really well. Lovely to have a chat”

Each call should last no more than 20 minutes, and is for the purpose of light & friendly conversation on a regular basis (usually weekly).
It is not for counselling purposes, or to give medical or financial advice.

The Telephone Befriending Service is FREE

To refer someone in NEED of support, please contact us at Derbyshire Carers Association – Head Office: 01773 833 833

Volunteering as a Telephone Befriender

All our Telephone Befriending volunteers receive a full DCA Induction and Telephone Befriending Training. We also request & check two references about them, before they start to call a Carer.

Could you be a volunteer? And make friendly calls to an isolated Carer?

The skills needed to be a Telephone Befriending Volunteer:

  • Good, clear communication skills, patience & common sense.
  • Be comfortable using the telephone.
  • Be a good listener, and have a sense of humour.
  • Positive outlook.
  • The ability to complete a Monthly record sheet of your calls.
  • Be able to call from home – using own telephone.

Calls can last from a few minutes to no longer than 20 minutes per call. Calling several Carers according to your time availability with a maximum session of around an hour to complete all calls. It is important your calls are confidential.
You may need to signpost the Carer onto other support via the Befriending Coordinator.

Please note: the role does not include visiting the Carer, or undertaking any tasks on a personal level for them.

What it means to our Volunteers, who make the calls:
 “It’s good to have the continuity and have a really good chat”
 “I feel that in twenty minutes I have possibly given a carer the opportunity to get things off their chest and maybe forget things for a little while. Hopefully made their day a bit brighter. I get a great deal of satisfaction from this and feel I have still something to contribute”

Both the Carers and Volunteers are supported throughout the time that they are part of the Telephone Befriending Service. Regular feedback is important to us, so that we can develop & improve the service. The relationship is supported & monitored by the DCA Befriending Coordinator.

How to contact us:

If you would like to find out more or have any questions about the Telephone Befriending Service, or would like to volunteer….. please call us at Derbyshire Carers Association on: 01773 833833

Derbyshire Carers Association – 3 Park Road, Ripley, Derbyshire DE5 3EF