In February 2020, LVP was faced with the challenge of continuing to support vulnerable people, whilst following social distancing and ensuring the wellbeing of our volunteers. In April 2020, we decided to change the face-to-face community support befriending to staying in touch by telephone. This meant that volunteers could safely continue supporting isolated and lonely people across Lancashire.
Over the pandemic, more than 800 isolated and vulnerable people have been supported by telephone befriending volunteers, who to present, have given over 20,000 telephone hours. This is an incredible achievement for our volunteers and staff, who have been busier than ever supporting people during the pandemic.
Speaking about how we adapted to provide the telephone befriending service, LVP Manager Joanne Latham said,
“At a time of crisis, volunteers and staff have been incredibly flexible and adaptable, providing a support service to some of the most isolated and vulnerable members of our community. It’s an incredible milestone that our volunteers have given over 20,000 telephone hours during the pandemic. A huge thank you to every volunteer so far who has given their valuable time to help support the people of Lancashire.”
As part of National Befriending Week this November, we are encouraging more people to apply to volunteer as telephone befrienders, as there are still many people who need support in the community.
Applications to become a telephone befriender are open across Lancashire including; Burnley, Rossendale, Preston, Pendle, South Ribble, Wyre, Fylde, Ribble Valley, Hyndburn, Lancaster, and Morecambe.
If you want to find out more about the opportunities available in your area and how to apply to become a volunteer, visit www.lancsvp.org.uk/opportunities.