The last week or so has seen a huge change for us at the Old Fire Station but we’re quickly adapting to the new normal. One of things we’ve been doing is telephone befriending with our service users to help combat isolation and to share information about where to get practical support.
We’ve spoken to over 75 people in the last few days and we’re finding out so much about our service users – from full on family histories to details of crochet projects and more.
We’ve been pleased to find that many of our service users have been doing exercises based on what our tutors have taught them. One elderly lady has even made up her own exercise routine, to do in the garden, that combines moves from the gentle exercise and the Tai-Chi classes – very creative. We’ve also been helping people to access online services for example assisting one person to download and read books on iBooks.
Overall we’ve found that people are missing their friends, children and grandkids most of all. But some have seen this as an opportunity to learn how to FaceTime to stay in contact. However, people are more often than not asking how we are, or are concerned with how the tutors are. I must say it doesn’t surprise me – we’ve always had lovely and caring service users.
I’ve also taken a lot of pleasure in connecting people to their Old Fire Station friends – by sharing telephone numbers (with permission!). Community can stay alive even when we can’t be in the same place.
If you know or anyone that could benefit from Telephone befriending please do contact us and we will see if we can help.