A north-east LGBT+ charity has launched a new befriending service to combat loneliness during the Covid-19 crisis
Four Pillars’s “4ever friends” service is led by local volunteers who will be able to keep in regular contact with their buddy through phone, email and other online communications.
The charity will be offering temporary mobile phones with top ups to those in financial need as a means to stay in touch with the volunteers.
As restrictions are slowly lifted, buddies will be able to meet up with service users, if necessary, with appropriate PPE, to further improve their overall health.
In some cases this could be the first person they have “physically” seen and spoken with for months.
Deejay Bullock, community relations manager of Four Pillars, helped raise the money with his own recent fundraiser.
He said: “I’m thrilled this project is able to go live.
“We have been working on this for a while and I have been trying to raise the needed funds by climbing the height of Mount Everest via my stairs at home.
“This service will have a huge impact on the mental and emotional health of our community, now and in the long term, and I know our volunteer team are sitting tight by the phones ready to support those in need.”