A friend in need is a friend indeed

A new team of volunteers have just completed their training to become befrienders with East Dunbartonshire Council’s Young Persons Befriending Scheme.

Ready to be befrienders

The befriending service is for young people aged between eight and 18 years who have been referred by social workers, GPs, health visitors and voluntary sector care workers.

A befriender spends time with young people who are having difficulties in their lives and need a little extra help.

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Volunteers befriend young people on a one-to one basis and go with them on social outings to the cinema, for a bite to eat, to do sports or even just a walk and a chat once every few weeks.

The aim is to increase the confidence and self-esteem of the young person and to be someone they can trust.

The volunteers attended training every Wednesday for eight weeks and needed to provide references, a report from their GP, go through a Disclosure Scotland inquiry and provide information for a background report.

The group will now commit to a year with the young person they are matched with. During that time, they will receive expenses for travel, food and the activities they do with the young person.

Councillor Michael O’Donnell, convener of EDC’s social work committee, said: “The Young Persons Befriending Scheme offers an invaluable service in our communities and these volunteers should be commended for giving up their time to help.”

If you are aged over 18 and would like to find out more about Befriending, please call the service on 0141 777 3000.