accessibility & help

Volunteers needed for project to improve health and wellbeing of people in Torbay

9 June 2015

The British Red Cross is building a team of volunteers to support isolated people in Torbay to cope with a significant life change such as illness or bereavement.

The two-year Torbay Navigators Project sees the Red Cross and Age UK Torbay working together to support the needs of people over 50 in Torquay and Paignton.

The project is particularly aimed at people facing a crisis or turning point in their lives such as bereavement, retirement or job loss, divorce or health changes, especially if they have little or no support from family or friends.

Volunteers encourage service users to identify their own personal goals towards increased social connections, independence and better financial health. Volunteers can come from all walks of life and no previous experience is necessary as full training is given. The project is funded by the Big Lottery Fund’s ‘Reaching Communities’ programme.

Red Cross volunteers support people for up to 12 weeks by offering practical and emotional support and helping people to link up with the most relevant services and social activities in the area. This is hoped to help them feel less lonely, more independent and more involved in their community. 

Red Cross volunteers may refer people to services and social clubs run by Age UK Torbay in the area, as well as offering the services of Age UK Torbay volunteers who can give specific advice and support with financial welfare and benefits.

Deborah Fisher, senior service manager for independent living at the Red Cross, says: 

“We are really pleased to be starting this new service to support older people in Torbay, working closely with Age UK Torbay. It is a highly valuable project that will transform lives and now we want to build up a team of local volunteers who can help us make it happen." 

“I would really encourage anyone who likes the sound of this project to get in touch about volunteering. If you have a few hours to spare each week and live in the Torquay and Paignton areas, the project can offer a rewarding experience and a way to gain new skills. We can offer full training and volunteer expenses.”

To find out more about how to volunteer, please contact Sharon or Caroline on 01803 321247. 


Notes to Editors:

For more information or interviews call Rebecca McIlhone on 0117 3012624.

  • The Big Lottery Fund supports the aspirations of people who want to make life better for their communities across the UK. We are responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by the National Lottery for good causes and invest over £650 million a year in projects big and small in health, education, environment and charitable purposes. 
  • Since June 2004 we have awarded over £8 billion to projects that make a difference to people and communities in need, from early years intervention to commemorative travel funding for World War Two veterans.
  • Since the National Lottery began in 1994, £33 billion has been raised and more than 450,000 grants awarded.

The British Red Cross helps people in crisis, whoever and wherever they are. We are part of a global voluntary network, responding to conflicts, natural disasters and individual emergencies. We enable vulnerable people in the UK and abroad to prepare for and withstand emergencies in their own communities. And when the crisis is over, we help them to recover and move on with their lives.

Follow us on Twitter: @RedCrossSouth

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