Volunteer Befriender

Would you like to support older people in your local community? 

Do you have a few hours to spare on a weekly basis?

MHA Communities - Winchester is a charity offering volunteer based support and friendship to older people living in their own homes; helping to maintain independent living, improve well-being and reduce isolation and loneliness. We aim to help older people maintain their independence by offering opportunities for companionship, support and advice. MHA Communities - Winchester is supported by volunteers who assist in variety of different ways.

What would I be doing as a Volunteer Befriender?

The aim of our Volunteer Befrienders is to help improve the quality of life for older people (in Winchester and the surrounding villages) who are socially isolated and reduce feelings of loneliness. Befriending is exactly what it sounds like – getting people together for companionship. Many older people living in their own homes can become isolated and lonely, but with a regular weekly visit – perhaps to read the paper to a visually impaired person, or to play cards – MHA Communities can help stop this from happening. Volunteers must be fully committed to this role, be patient, trustworthy and reliable with excellent listening and interpersonal skills.


Skills and qualities needed for this role:

  • Excellent listening skills
  • Patience, empathy and understanding of the needs of older people
  • You will be reliable, punctual and flexible
  • You will have a clear sense of personal boundaries
  • You have the ability to provide a supportive and non-judgemental service
  •  You’ll be willing to engage with training and development
  • You will have a good understanding of personal strengths and limitations
  • You’ll be able to maintain confidentiality 

What impact would I have?

Visiting a member on a weekly basis sounds really simple, but having someone to talk to and someone to listen, could really make a difference to an older person.

How does it work?

Our Volunteer Befrienders are matched with an older person to visit, you will make contact with them by phone and arrange a mutually convenient time to visit them on a weekly basis.

Why volunteer for MHA?

If you are passionate about caring for older people, MHA is the place for you. We are a national charity inspiring the best care at every stage of later life. It is our mission to enable people to live later life well and you could help us achieve this. We will provide you with ongoing training, support and advice throughout your volunteering experience.

There is an application and induction process which needs to be completed to enable you to become a volunteer with us. This will involve a number of stages including providing References, attending an online induction, completing a Volunteer Agreement, a DBS application (including providing suitable ID) and completing various online training courses depending on the volunteer role such as Safeguarding, Confidentiality and Moving & Handling. Volunteers benefit from local support in your chosen volunteering role, annual reviews, ongoing training and out of pocket expenses.


  • Accessibility
  • Age restrictions
  • DBS check required
  • Equal Opportunities Policy
  • Expenses reimbursed
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Ongoing support
  • Training provided
  • Volunteer induction
  • Volunteer Policy
  • Volunteers covered by insurance
  • Written role description

When can I volunteer?

Start Date: 22/06/2021

End Date: 22/06/2022

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
Morning Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Afternoon Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Evening No No No No No No No


The United Church
Jewry Street
SO23 8RZ

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