Good Neighbours Schemes are established and run by local people to provide day-to-day support for other residents who may need help on an occasional or regular basis.
The aim is to support neighbours to maintain a good quality of life, remain independent in their own homes if they wish to, and reduce their reliance on statutory health and care support systems.
How the scheme works
In order for a Good Neighbours scheme to work in a village, parish area or neighbourhood, we need at least one person from that area to volunteer as a co-ordinator. Their job is to match people who need help, with volunteers in the area who are willing to give that help.
The overall aim is to help vulnerable or older people with everyday tasks such as:
- Dog walking and caring for pets during holiday or illness
- Household tasks such as setting up televisions, changing light bulbs or batteries in smoke alarms
- Help with shopping
- Support filling in forms, writing letters, reading or using computers and the internet
- Offering lifts to a GP surgery, clinic, hospital, day centre or other appointments.
How it benefits communities
Good Neighbours schemes are a great way of bringing a community together to help everyone - both the local volunteers as well as the people they are helping.
For volunteers, the scheme is a chance to:
- Get involved with your community and do as much or as little as you want. There's no need to feel awkward if you can't always help
- Meet new people who you might not have met otherwise, including those from different generations
- Make good use of whatever time you have to spare as well as particular skills you may have, such as IT or gardening expertise.
The benefits for those being helped include:
- A chance to access support to complete jobs that may normally be difficult to do alone
- An opportunity to meet new people and make friends
- People no longer need to feel they are 'bothering' neighbours if they need to ask for help frequently
- Help people to stay in their own home for longer as they get older
- Soften the impact of losing local services such as the village shop or post office.
The scheme aims to provide a social 'safety net' for the village or local area in which it is operating. Volunteers complete practical tasks (such as driving or shopping) and/or provide emotional support, such as befriending. They do not offer specialist care or play any role that should be left to professional, qualified services. Nor do they provide volunteers to carry out skilled tasks that are appropriate for qualified tradespeople.
Crick Good Neighbours Coronavirus Strategy (PDF, 1.7 Mb)