What is Befriending?Befrienders

Befriending is a special kind of intentional friendship between a young person and a trained volunteer, built on trust, mutual respect, shared interests and compatibility. Together the young person and befriender spend time trying out new activities, introducing each other to their own favourite hobbies and interests, and getting to know one another. The key role of the Befriender is to offer a consistent and steady support to the young person, whilst they have fun together taking part in a variety of activities.

Please click here to read our Befriender Role Description.

What is the referal criteria and who can refer?

We work with young people from lots of different backgrounds and for lots of different reasons. Some of our young people are referred to us because they’re being bullied at school, or because they’re struggling with social anxiety. Others might be referred because they have a family member with an alcohol or drug misuse issue, they are struggling with parental separation, or they are living with a disability that has resulted in social isolation.

We accept referrals from any person or organisation, so long as they have the consent of the young person (and their parent/carer if the young person is below 16).

Please click here for a Referral Form.

Why Volunteer as a Befriender?

1. It’s fun - we make each match with fun in mind! Befriending works best for everybody when you are having a good time.  

2. You get to do the fun stuff and we cover the costs! Our young people and Befrienders take part in loads of activities, from going to the movies to rock climbing, from eating out to ceilidh dancing. Befriending is a volunteering role so we don’t pay our volunteers, but we do pay for all their mileage or travel fees and cover the costs of all activities for both Befriender and young person.  

3. You get to make a real tangible difference - watching a young person come out of their shell, or gain the confidence to try new things or pick up new hobbies is a reward in itself. Our Befrienders get to watch this unfolding in the lives of their young people.  

4. Become a part of a community of volunteers - many of our Befrienders join us because they want to meet other like-minded people. We have several group events scheduled over the year to help Befrienders get to know each other.  

5. Make a positive change in your own life - whether you want to make a career change, gain experience working with young people in a supportive role, or just want to change what you do with your spare time, Befriending could be just the thing for you. We have seen Befrienders use their experience with us to go on to full-time positions within similar roles in other organisations.

To become a Befriender you need to be 18 or over & be a caring person. We take care of the rest.

• We will train you.

• We thoughtfully match you to your young person

• We pay for the activities you do together (both of you)

• We support you throughout the match

Want to take the next step? 

Simply tell us

Your name*
Your email address
Your phone number
What interests you most about befriending?
How did you hear about us?
Or, if you would rather contact us, feel free to ring Hannah or Morgan on 872897 for an informal chat to find out more about how befriending could help you.

Contact Us

© Voluntary Action Orkney 2013 - 2017

By using this website you agree to our use of cookies as described in our Terms of Use.

You are here: Home Befriending Young Peoples Befriending Project