Successful Care Home Buddy Project to cover all North Wales
Posted on 13 Nov 2023
I’m sure by now if you follow us on social media, you will have seen evidence of our three Care Home Buddy projects that have been running this year in Denbighshire, Conwy and Pembrokeshire, with funding from Denbighshire and Conwy Age Friendly Communities and Community Foundation in Wales respectively. The feedback from residents, care home staff, families and volunteers has been extremely positive and a few months ago, we approached People’s Postcode Lottery for funding to enable us to recruit, train and retain volunteers across the whole of North Wales. And to our delight, we’ve just discovered we’ve been successful!
The idea for Care Home Buddies came about a few years ago following a community book project that was running in Llanrwst. We’d visited a particular care home there to gather memories of the town and on its completion, the staff wondered whether we’d be able to continue visiting because we were the only visitors some residents had. Over the following months, we realised this was common in nearly every care home in the country and we ran a small pilot to see whether training volunteers to simply visit for an hour once a week to befriend and chat would make a difference. Unsurprisingly it did! And it worked both ways with our volunteers getting just as much from these visits as the residents themselves. One volunteer even gets weekly help with her Welsh language learning from her resident!
Book of You Community BooksCommunity Books can be used as resources to have conversations around as they contain wonderful tales of the towns people have lived in, but no technical ability is needed for this project. Volunteers can simply turn up and chat, look at photographs, do crossword puzzles or even watch tv together. Like any friendship, there is no one way to engage and share time together.
If you live in any of the North Wales counties and would be interested in joining our band of Care Home Buddies, please get in touch with us by email at email@example.com, or phone 01492 555381 and we’d love to hear from you. We are looking for Welsh and English speaking volunteers, full training and checks will be provided, along with Tempo Time Credits as a thank you for your valuable support.
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