Why we exist as a charity.

Loneliness exists and we’d like to help end it.

Loneliness and social isolation are harmful to our health

Over 9 million people in the UK – almost a fifth of the population – say they are always or often lonely (British Red Cross and Co-Op, 2016).

But don’t take our word for it. Here’s what the experts say:

Why we exist as a charity.

Loneliness exists and we’d like to help end it.

Loneliness and social isolation are harmful to our health

Over 9 million people in the UK – almost a fifth of the population – say they are always or often lonely (British Red Cross and Co-Op, 2016).

But don’t take our word for it. Here’s what the experts say:

Loneliness increases the likelihood of mortality by 26%

Holt-Lunstad, 2015

The effect of loneliness and isolation on mortality is comparable to the impact of well-known risk factors such as obesity and has a similar influence as cigarette smoking.

Holt-Lunstad, 2010

Use A&E services independent of chronic illness.

Geller, Janson, McGovern and Valdini, 1999

Undergo early entry into residential or nursing care.

Russell et al, 1997

Lonely individuals are more likely to visit their GP, have higher use of medication, higher incidence of falls and increased risk factors for long-term care.

Cohen, 2006

Lonely people have a 64% increased chance of developing clinical dementia.

Holwerda et al, 2012

For more research into loneliness, check out the facts and figures via the Campaign to End Loneliness

What we do as a charity.

Our befriending

This is community support in its most authentic form.

Volunteer befrienders pledge to visit a socially isolated older neighbour near them for one hour per week for a cuppa and a chat. On the way back from work, the shops, dropping the kids at school – whenever is convenient for both parties, a befriender will spend an hour just chatting, listening and supporting someone that otherwise may have no one.

We pair individuals primarily based on locality and also make connections based on personal interests. Each befriender and older neighbour receive regular support to ensure they’re benefitting from the project.

HOW BIG IS THE PROBLEM?

Our Social Clubs

Since inception, b:Friend has created, delivered and evaluated hundreds of hours of community social group activity in Doncaster.

b:Friend has an effective blueprint for social groups for older adults focusing on venue, budgeting, marketing to the most isolated individuals and session planning methodology over (usually) a 48-week year.

Each group activity is different… and they’re certainly not boring. From shaking-up Bond-style mocktails, performing street-dance routines, designing Christmas cards, making bird boxes, chocolate tasting sessions and jiving to Bollywood-inspired music… members are exploring new horizons and getting out of their comfort zone each week.

The Five Ways to Wellbeing model forms a clear framework with which b:Friend co-design all group activities. Our Social Clubs ensure attendees are: connected to others through conversation and activity; active through physically engaged sessions; continue to learn through engaging talks, discuss topics of the day and take note of others around them; while giving time, support and attention to others.

WHAT IS THE IMPACT?

Outreach

We’re working on a theory of change to determine the next layer of support beyond 1:1 and peer befriending so, as we evolve, additional levels of support will be trialled and introduced.

GET IN TOUCH TO FIND OUT MORE

For more research into loneliness, check out the facts and figures via the Campaign to End Loneliness

What we do as a charity.

Our befriending

This is community support in its most authentic form.

Volunteer befrienders pledge to visit a socially isolated older neighbour near them for one hour per week for a cuppa and a chat. On the way back from work, the shops, dropping the kids at school – whenever is convenient for both parties, a befriender will spend an hour just chatting, listening and supporting someone that otherwise may have no one.

We pair individuals primarily based on locality and also make connections based on personal interests. Each befriender and older neighbour receive regular support to ensure they’re benefitting from the project.

HOW BIG IS THE PROBLEM?

Our Social Clubs

Since inception, b:Friend has created, delivered and evaluated hundreds of hours of community social group activity in Doncaster.

b:Friend has an effective blueprint for social groups for older adults focusing on venue, budgeting, marketing to the most isolated individuals and session planning methodology over (usually) a 48-week year.

Each group activity is different… and they’re certainly not boring. From shaking-up Bond-style mocktails, performing street-dance routines, designing Christmas cards, making bird boxes, chocolate tasting sessions and jiving to Bollywood-inspired music… members are exploring new horizons and getting out of their comfort zone each week.

The Five Ways to Wellbeing model forms a clear framework with which b:Friend co-design all group activities. Our Social Clubs ensure attendees are: connected to others through conversation and activity; active through physically engaged sessions; continue to learn through engaging talks, discuss topics of the day and take note of others around them; while giving time, support and attention to others.

WHAT IS THE IMPACT?

Outreach

We’re working on a theory of change to determine the next layer of support beyond 1:1 and peer befriending so, as we evolve, additional levels of support will be trialled and introduced.

FIND OUT MORE

Our partners.

b:friend is lucky to have the fantastic support of some committed and visionary grant funders. To change the status quo there must be a desire to do things differently and we work with some wonderfully forward-thinking organisations, without whom, this project would not exist.

For full details of our partner organisations, see our latest audited annual accounts.

Our partners.

b:friend is lucky to have the fantastic support of some committed and visionary grant funders. To change the status quo there must be a desire to do things differently and we work with some wonderfully forward-thinking organisations, without whom, this project would not exist.

For full details of our partner organisations, see our latest audited annual accounts.

Looking to volunteer? Use our interactive map to find an elderly neighbour in your area.

Here you can apply and register for your DBS check too.
VIEW NEIGHBOUR MAP

We're all neighbours.
Let’s b:friend.

We're all neighbours.
Let’s b:friend.