Happy New Year?

Publish Date: 17/12/2012

When everyone is celebrating with their loved ones during the Christmas and New Year season, it can be hard to do the same if you are feeling isolated and low. 

Quite often people who are enjoying themselves around us can make the loneliness worse and increase feelings of despair and sadness.  When everything seems fun and bright around us and new years’ resolutions seem hopeless, where can we go for help and support?

This is where the LGF’s Befriending service may be able to help.  We have so far supported a diverse range of people in 2012, including people who are new to the area, just out of long term relationships, or who have mental health problems. 

"I will take away the knowledge that there are decent people willing to give time from their own lives to support other people"

Making friends and building social networks can be a really difficult thing for anyone, but sometimes our past experiences, mental health troubles and becoming distant from friends and family can make us feel like isolating ourselves even more and also may result in low confidence and self esteem.   

We have also helped people who are unsure about their sexuality, by providing them with a confidential and non judgemental service in which to share.  By offering 10 sessions with a volunteer befriender, we can support you to discover what’s out there whilst encouraging your confidence and self esteem, all we ask is that you are over 25 and live in the Greater Manchester area. 

"The service is a real help in a very difficult area of a person’s private life."

With a trained befriender, past befriendees have taken part in a range of activities, such as; meeting up for a coffee and a chat, revisiting old pastimes such as amateur dramatics and the theatre, visited art galleries, attended hobby based workshops or have accessed another support service such as a group, we’ve even seen people go ice skating! 

The service can also help you become involved in your community, and our volunteers are also able to travel out to your town or village (although we are not able to offer home visits).

"I enjoyed the company of someone who was sane and grounded, and have happy memories of outings in Manchester".

Regular one to one contact is really important for some people, and a befriender can help you set realistic goals and work towards them.  They can also help you with practical things that get on top of us from time to time, such as applying for jobs or college courses.  And if they’re knowledge doesn’t stretch that far, they can help you find a service that can support you beyond the 10 sessions.

We’ll cover all your travel expenses as well as provide you with activity money to cover your tea or cake.  All we ask is that you complete an application form and come in to the LGF for a chat with us about how best we can support you through the service. 

For any questions and for an application form, click here or email befrienders@lgf.org.uk or phone 0845 3 30 30 30