Action for Children runs the North Lincolnshire Independent Visitors scheme from offices in Scunthorpe and the service is in need of more people to get involved.
Independent visitors are matched with a young person who is looked after by the local authority – they may be in foster care or a children’s home – and then spend time visiting them, getting to know them and offering a friendly ear and some one-to-one time.
One of those volunteers is 85-year-old Alan Perkins of High Street, Belton who has been an independent visitor for almost six years.
Alan first met Stuart when he was 13-years-old. He is almost 19 now but the pair continues to meet now and then, having a meal together or just enjoying a chat.
After being attracted to a role where he could make a difference to youngsters who needed help, Alan says he still gets a lot from it: “I wanted to help those less fortunate than myself and this has enabled me to be involved in something that keeps young people on the right course,” he said.
“I look forward to our meetings and get a lot of satisfaction from the scheme.”
But it’s a role that needs careful consideration, added Alan: “The most important thing to think about when you’re deciding whether to put yourself forward is whether you really have the time to commit, as it is important to be consistent for the young person involved.”
Anyone aged 21 or above can become an independent visitor; you don’t need qualifications to be considered because all relevant training is provided by Action for Children.
For more information please email Beverley on Beverley.firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01724 277766.