Befriending Role - Talking Together Scheme

Talking Together is a listening and befriending scheme which gives isolated adults with mental health problems, the opportunity to speak regularly to volunteers and to share their concerns, fears or issues and receive consistent support.

It is entirely telephone and video-call based at present.  All volunteers will be trained to provide befriending and listening support to adults in the local South East Essex community, over the phone or via video messaging, to support the Southend COVID-19 response.  Volunteers will work mainly from home (2-5 hours a week - this is a very flexible role) and will report to the Talking Together Co-ordinator.

The Volunteer will be required to:

  • Provide befriending and listening support to adults (via telephone or video messaging) in the local south east Essex community, that have mental health challenges, particularly with anxiety and as a result of social isolation
  • Counselling or mentoring skills would be welcomed, but not essential.

  • Have good listening skills, and be able to reflect back and show empathy.
  • Be available to undergo a video link interview (e.g. Zoom).
  • Undergo a DBS check
  • Have a quiet space that they can work from
  • Work with between 2 and 5 befriendees per week, contacting them once per week


  • ·       Make weekly contact with befriendees that have been assigned by the Befriending Co-ordinator
  • ·       Raise any issues affecting befriendees with appropriate staff member
  • ·       Feedback to staff relevant information relating to befriendees’ progress
  • ·       Participate in regular supervision with the Talking Together Co-ordinator
  • ·       Take part in appropriate training and development activities
  • ·       Participate in volunteer meetings
  • ·       Notify staff if you are unable to provide your regular session
  • ·       Ensure Health and Safety regulations are adhered to in line with Trust Links Health and Safety policy
  • ·       Ensure Safeguarding requirements are met in line with Trust Links Safeguarding Policy and escalate concerns about the wellbeing of service users to appropriate staff members
  • ·       Maintain confidentiality


Volunteers will need:

  • Excellent communication and people skills
  • Empathy and listening skills
  • Commitment to self-development 
  • Willingness and commitment to undertake further training and development
  • Commitment to the role
  • Tact
  • Responsiveness
  • Realism
  • Honesty
  • Team work
  • Enthusiasm


  • Accessibility
  • Data Protection policy
  • DBS check required
  • Equal opportunities policy
  • Expenses reimbursed
    By prior arrangement
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Ongoing support
  • Suitable for under 18s
  • Training provided
  • Volunteer induction
  • Volunteer policy
  • Volunteers covered by insurance
  • Written role description

When can I volunteer?

Start Date: 06/08/2020

End Date: 06/08/2022

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
Morning Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Afternoon Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Evening Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Availability Details

2 - 5 hours required per week - FLEXIBLE working from home! The service will cover the Southend, Canvey Island & Rochford areas.


This opportunity is available in: Castle Point, Rayleigh and Rochford, Southend

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