The impact of volunteers on Brendoncare clubs and care homes
Volunteers are essential to our work at Brendoncare. We could not achieve what we do without them. They make such a difference, putting smiles on the faces of members and care home residents every day.
Brendoncare’s volunteers are some of our most valued frontline workers. They enable us to combat loneliness directly. They also help to stimulate some wonderful activities and conversations between community members.
After the world started returning to normal after Covid, we reflected on the importance of their work, especially during that particularly challenging time.
Covid exacerbated this even further as a significant number of older people were then unfamiliar with the internet. Consequently, they felt even more lonely, especially during the lockdowns.
Brendoncare’s community clubs had to close during Covid and our care homes stopped welcoming visitors. As a result, members and residents felt cut off from their friends and family. But our volunteers stepped up to the plate throughout, helping members and residents to connect with their loved ones by providing online help, telephone support and Zoom activities.
Not only do our clubs volunteers help activities run smoothly, they also provide valuable support and socialise with the members.
Lorraine, a Brendoncare community volunteer, explains why she decided to help out: “I knew I wanted to help people, especially with the pandemic leaving many feeling vulnerable and isolated.”
We also have telephone support volunteers, who act as a valuable point of contact for members who are isolated in their communities. They are there to support members and help them feel they are not alone.
Jan is a club member who received telephone support during the pandemic. She decided she would also like to support others and has become one of our telephone volunteers.
Jan said: “I’ve been on the receiving end of telephone support for the last 18 months. Although I’m used to being on my own, this was a different scenario and I know how much these weekly calls have meant to me. Initially, a look-forward-to contact, a reliable, scheduled event during an uncertain time of scary ‘shielding’. Then, later, developing into more of a friendship, a weekly chat to discuss the happenings of both parties.
“I would like to give back some of that ‘warm, fuzzy feeling’ to others… to let them know that they’re not alone and that others care about them.”
Volunteers helped to organise and run activities over Zoom as a part of our online clubs support. Online clubs are a great way for members to stay in contact remotely. For those who aren’t local to our clubs, or have unreliable transport, online clubs provide a fantastic opportunity to meet new people.
Volunteers in Care Homes
She said: “I found playing the clarinet and piano to the residents most rewarding. I love to play because I can express my emotions through my music… I was particularly touched by one resident who seemed to enjoy it so much that he got up and started dancing, even following me to watch my next performance.”
Our care homes also benefit from digital connection volunteers. They visit our homes, helping residents to improve their confidence in accessing their email, social media or even making a Zoom call. This in turn helps residents to connect with relatives, loved ones and friends.
Our volunteer drivers play a vital part in helping members get to clubs. Without volunteer drivers, members who don’t have reliable transport might not be able to attend the clubs. In turn, this could be detrimental to their physical and mental wellbeing.
If you are interested in volunteering for Brendoncare, you can find out more on our current opportunities page, or you can give us a call on 01962 857097 or email us at email@example.com.