What do GoodNeighbours do? Picture from EDP article on Potter Heigham Good Neighbours Project 22nd June 2010
What does it mean to be aGood Neighbour? • Discuss in pairs • What does it mean to be a Good Neighbour in your community? • Are there similar schemes in your area?
Good NeighbourProject• What do they do?• Community project run by (Above Glemsford Good Neighbourgroup of local people. Project in Suffolk)-Groups respond to need of local peopleIe Giving a lift to Drs surgery, shopping, befriending/home visiting, gardening etc-Similar projects running successfully in Norfolk in Potter Heigham, Horsham St Faiths, Wood Dalling, Four Villages(-Ditchingham et al), Thurlton and Little Snoring.
• The bottom line is that there’s a phone number everyone can call to get a bit of help with little things.”• Mike Hill, Chair of St Faiths Good Neighbour Scheme, Norfolk
Who will benefit? • Simple answer is everyone in your community • Project is flexible-each community is different. • Support may range from supporting a parent to taking an older person to a Drs appointment. • Community benefit-create more links between members of the community. • Isolated members of community- gives them a safety net • Volunteer benefits-feel part of the community
How does it work?• Usually 10-20 local volunteers• Average 5 requests a week• Neighbours call the Good Neighbour phone and request help• Six or seven local people take turns to keep the phone, log the calls and arrange a volunteer to help• Help with simple jobs, such as a lift to the Doctor’s surgery, getting to the shops, or changing a light bulb
Role of good neighbour • Isolated people rely on informal help from their neighbours • Local people take on responsibility • The numbers of older people in Norfolk needing informal help is growing • The Good Neighbour project will strengthen and add to the informal support already available
Schemes relationshipto the Parish Council • Normally independent of Parish Council • In other villages often supported to an extent by the Parish Council either financially ( with running costs (Above) Little Snoring in subsequent years) or through Good Neighbour Scheme publicity.
Case Study-PotterHeigham GNP–Client’s perspective • “Potter Heigham Good Neighbours are brilliant. Everyone is very helpful. We are lucky to have a group of people who give their time to us. The befriending I get gives me the time to talk through my week. It is also nice to get out of the house and go to the shops etc. The Surgery prescription run takes our worry away knowing that our medication will be delivered." This client is in her late 80s and lost her husband about 2 years ago. She has limited mobility and needs help getting to the Post Office to collect her pension.
Potter HeighamVolunteer’s perspective • “At the second meeting (of the Project) in January 2010 I tentatively put myself forward as the Chairperson - I have since met and worked with many wonderful people in our community and would not have missed this experience for the world. I have made firm friends with many of our Committee members and volunteers and have thoroughly enjoyed the infancy of this project. It has been challenging at times but extremely rewarding.” (Liz Graves-Morris, Chair of Potter Heigham Good Neighbours Project)
Development timeframe • December 2009 Public Meeting held to promote the scheme from this meeting a steering committee of people from the village was formed. • January 2010 Constitution of group adopted and committee formed. • February and March 2010 Volunteers recruited and trained May 2010 Volunteers CRB checked • June 2010 Scheme launched in Potter Heigham • April 2011 Funding from Norfolk Community Foundation secured • May 2011 Tea club developed!
GNP volunteersset up a teaafternoon in theirvillage
GNP Volunteerssupport flu clinicin their village
Who is needed? • Steering committee members -To co-ordinate the project -To be the link between volunteers and clients ( via a communal mobile phone) -To fundraise and gather community support • Volunteers -People that would like to help with occasional gardening, dog walking, befriending, giving lifts etc All CRB checked Volunteers could opt in or our of doing tasks as their commitments allow. AND clients!
Challenges 1. Recruiting a strong chair person 2. Getting most vulnerable to use scheme! 3. Development time per project-slow burn
Strategies• Issue-Recruiting strong chair-Strength of the scheme is it allows people to play to their strengths-Strong chair helps guide group forward ad acts as points of contact.-Ensure that chair has support to mentor/encourage a future successor into their role.
Strategies • Issue-Getting most vulnerable to use scheme • Patience! Scheme develops organically and develops momentum. • Tailor project for needs of the village. Ie in Potter Heigham Luncheon club, Tea afternoon get community together. • Word of mouth recommendations. • Using local press, village newsletter ( regular updates of the scheme etc), EDP
Strategies• Issue - Development timeframe• ‘Slow burn’ project• Project builds gradually which allows number of volunteers and capacity of committee to grow with it.
Imagine-In pairs/small groups • You’re elderly, moved into the village ten years ago don’t drive and have recently lost your husband and live in a rural village. ( No family nearby.) 2. What support might you need? 3. What support do you think you might be offered realistically? 4. Will there be a gap between the two and how might this be addressed?
Possible scenarios • 1. Your neighbour mentions her cooker is broken and she has called an electrician but he’s going to take 3 days to come. The weather is cold and snowy. -What do you do? • 2.Whilst visiting an isolated elderly client you become increasing concerned about his ability to remember appointments and he seem confused. -What should you do?
More scenarios• 3. A lady who has recently moved to your village appears to be isolated and made unwelcome at village groups.-What do you do?• 4. When visiting Pat you find their house increasingly dirty and cold.-What do you do?
And more scenarios• 5. Bill is recently widowed when giving him a lift to hospital he mentions that he is struggling to keep on top of his household bills.-How do you react?6. You have started befriending Molly as winter approaches she seems increasingly depressed and distant. She appears to have no family or friends to spend Christmas with.-How do you respond?
• ‘Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it’s the only thing that has.’ Margaret Mead
For further information contact Lucinda Leonardlucinda@norfolkrcc.org.uk 01362 698216 Ambassador Way, Greens Road, Dereham