Joan is something of a pioneer. She was among a group of volunteers, who happen to be nursing home residents, who four years ago started what has become known as the Telephone Club.
Along with Delores and Valma, Joan once a week volunteers her time and telephones a person roughly the same age as her for a chat as part of UnitingCare Wesley Bowden’s (UCWB) Community Links program.
UCWB has more than 100 people, mostly elderly, who are isolated or lonely, in the community who want a once or twice a week phone call for a natter with a friendly voice.
“It’s more than a social club, it’s become a friendship club and sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between the volunteers and the call recipients, many of whom are in their 90s.”Coralie Griffiths, UCWB Team Leader
UCWB Team Leader, Coralie Griffiths, said what began as a voluntary community service has resulted in the formation of many firm friendships.
“They enjoy talking to their peers and they also enjoy the fact that they have an opportunity to give something back to their community,” Coralie says.
“It’s more than a social club, it’s become a friendship club and sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between the volunteers and the call recipients, many of who are in their 90s.”
With about 17 volunteers from Kapara in Glenelg South and Marten in Largs North and our valued volunteers who come into UCWB every week, they manage to make more than 100 phone calls helping to keep people connected to their community.