Forget me not service - Glasgow
The Forget me not service supports people with dementia in care homes and hospital wards who may be isolated and feeling alone, by matching them up with a volunteer. Befrienders offer companionship and support to do the things they enjoy. This can be anything from visiting the local café, garden area, going for walks, visiting community events, or simply just chatting.
Why join the Forget me not service?
Volunteers often tell us that they gain a great deal of satisfaction and confidence from their work. For some, volunteering can be a route into employment. For others the reward is just to know that they have been able to use their skills to help someone else.
Giving up a couple of hours a week to visit someone with dementia in a care home or hospital means such a lot. For many residents, it’s just knowing that you are there to share some ‘one to one’ time with them, that makes all the difference.
As more and more people learn of the service, we get more and more requests for befrienders. It's a great way to meet others and to learn new skills.
We are very proud of the work our volunteers do and we try hard to support them at every stage of their placements, starting with initial training to ensure they are fully prepared, comfortable and confident in their role.
We find that volunteers usually prefer to be placed near to home and so travel expenses aren’t always incurred. However we will happily pay out-of-pocket expenses where required.
Our amazing volunteers
There's no such thing as a typical volunteer. Currently our Forget me not Befrienders are aged 16 years and upwards and have a vast range of backgrounds, with our oldest volunteer being 88 years old.
We like to know about any skills and interests that volunteers have, as this helps us to find the best placement for them. It is often surprising the skills and interests that both volunteers, and the person with dementia that they befriend, have in common.
“…there is plenty of evidence that when cognitive impairment is accompanied by social isolation it causes unhappiness. Since social isolation is a common experience in old age, it is imperative to help people stay socially engaged throughout their lives. With positive attitudes and the right abilities, befrienders are a classic variety of ‘felicitators’ – people who intentionally spread happiness
We celebrated 10 years of the befriending service in October this year 2018, we would like to say a huge Thank You to all our volunteers present and past, and to all our partners in care homes, hospital wards and day services throughout the Glasgow and East Dunbartonshire area.
“For some time, we have had two volunteers for Alzheimer Scotland visit the home every Sunday to assist residents with some meaningful activity and all residents at our home love them and really look forward to their visits. They perform a wide range of activities that also considers the residents ability, likes and previous lifestyles. On top of this we have had occasions where we have had residents who we found were not engaging with activities within the home, we were able to sit with the volunteers and ask them if they could offer some encouragement, to our surprise and delight they were able to engage with the residents in question and get them to attend and they enjoyed the sessions and have been attending regularly since.
The residents and staff feel that the support offered by the volunteers are invaluable as they offer social stimulation. As well as the residents engaging with activities they are also engage with others, where this may often not have been the case.”
John Wright, Senior Care Worker, Riverside Care Home
We gratefully acknowledge the support of this work, over a five-year period, by:
The Forget-me-not team are:
Isa Rao: Volunteer Coordinator
Sian Hunter: Volunteer Coordinator
William Platt: Administrator
- Sian Hunter, Volunteer Coordinator
- Alzheimer Scotland Glasgow Resource Centre, 81 Oxford Street, Glasgow, G5 9EP
- 0141 418 5953
- [email protected]