Volunteer Responders programme supports adult social care providers
17 Nov 2023
3 min read
This #GoodNewsFriday we hear about how the Volunteer Responders Programme is supporting social care.
The Volunteer Responders programme provides adult social care providers with appropriately checked volunteers to support people in receipt of care.
Volunteers can support with friendly phone calls and by picking up and delivering prescriptions and shopping.
Volunteer Responders is a flexible volunteering programme supporting adult social care and the NHS in England.
This programme is built on a digital platform and links an available pool of volunteers to local live tasks through the GoodSAM app.
It’s a quick and simple process to book a volunteer and you can sign up as a referrer in moments.
Local authorities have always been able to refer people in receipt of a care package to the programme. Now Volunteer Responders are available to help adult social care providers across all eligible residential and domiciliary settings.
The programme makes it easier for people to volunteer and simpler for care providers to access support.
Volunteers won’t undertake any staff duties, but will complement the existing workforce, allowing care and health staff to focus on providing quality care to those who need it most.
Andrew’s experience as a volunteer
Andrew Marks volunteers with Volunteer Responders, giving his time to support the mental health and wellbeing of others. Andrew's role involves making friendly phone calls to people who may be lonely or isolated. Since the programme’s inception in 2020, care colleagues have been referring individuals to receive support from Andrew and his fellow volunteers.
Andrew's support extends to individuals receiving care, whether in their own homes or care facilities. He takes pride in offering reassurance and understands the value of lifting the spirits of those he chats with.
David’s experience being supported by volunteers
David Fielden from Somerset has been facing the challenges of living with a chronic illness that has left him isolated and housebound. As his condition progressed, David found himself lacking social interaction and struggling with feelings of loneliness. David receives regular phone calls as part of the programme, for David, these calls are a lifeline that brighten his day and provide him with much-needed socialisation.
Supporting the social care sector
Caroline Callaghan, who is currently utilising Volunteer Responders services in her role at Hartlepool Borough Council, said:
Similarly, Samantha Aylott, Specialist Advisor for Adult Social Care at Essex County Council, regularly uses the Volunteer Responder programme to organise volunteer Check in and Chat calls for people as part of their social care package.
Sam Ward OBE, Deputy CEO of Royal Voluntary Service said:
Find out more or make a referral by visiting the website or call the support team on 0808 196 3382.
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