Volunteers needed to befriend young people and adults with learning difficulties in Ely and the Fens

PUBLISHED: 17:01 11 July 2018 | UPDATED: 17:01 11 July 2018

Eddie's desperately need befriender volunteers. PHOTO: Alex Orrow

Eddie's desperately need befriender volunteers. PHOTO: Alex Orrow

Copyright © 2008 Alex Orrow

A charity is looking for volunteers to befriend young people and adults with learning difficulties.

Eddie's desperately need befriender volunteers. PHOTO: Alex Orrow Eddie's desperately need befriender volunteers. PHOTO: Alex Orrow

Volunteers are vital to the work at Eddie’s, who support 650 children, young people and adults and their families across Cambridgeshire.

Helen Thurley, head of services at Eddie’s, said: “Our services are lifelines to our members but our volunteers also gain so much from the experience themselves, reporting back improved wellbeing and the development of new skills.

“We’re incredibly thankful to them and the fantastic work they do.

“Our befriending service involves volunteers being matched with a young person, or adult over 25, with learning disabilities and spending time with them every few weeks.

“It’s incredibly flexible and up to the volunteer and match to decide when suits them, and what they want to do. It could be going for a walk, watching a film, heading to the supermarket or just having a cup of tea.

“We’ve a big waiting list in Ely and Fenland in particular so have a desperate need for new volunteers to come forward.”

Full training is provided to all volunteers, along with ongoing support from the befriending service manager.

“This scheme really does make such a huge difference to the match and the family.

“Our service users report back that they no longer feel lonely or isolated. They develop confidence and life skills that give them independence. “This service changes lives. Our volunteers also tell us that they have improved confidence, skills and work-readiness.”

• To find out more about volunteering for us email volunteer@eddies.org.uk

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