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Neighbourhood Connections

Horsley & Guildford Town Centre

Neighbourhood Connections is a community project that aims to help people live happy, healthy and independent lives in Horsley and Guildford Town Centre.

This is a partnership project between the Diocese of Guildford and Guildford Borough Council, supported by local voluntary organisations and people living in your local area.

What is ​its purpose?

  • To enable residents of the Horsley and Guildford town centres to link with local support and services: this may range from local social activities and voluntary schemes, to borough and county level statutory support services.
  • To strengthen community capacity & resilience: by training local people in ‘signposting’ (information provision) where people can easily access the information and support they need.
  • To identify and support socially isolated and/or vulnerable residents to re-engage with the community, by providing short-term help to residents who can’t easily access information or support independently.

What values underpin the project?

  • Community-owned and led: this project has arisen from needs identified by local people and its success will be largely dependent on the involvement and ownership of local volunteers, residents and organisations.
  • Person-centred: each person will be treated as an individual and support will be tailored and adapted to suit particular needs.
  • Partnership: working alongside professionals and organisations at a local and wider level, to reach the best outcomes for individuals.

What roles can people in the local community play?

Volunteers will be given initial training and ongoing support and opportunities to share experiences with other volunteers. There are three key roles within the project, with different levels of commitment and training:

Neighbourhood Connector

Based in specific locations in the community to listen and provide information and basic advice about appropriate support which is available. This may include locations where people seeking help can book appointments, such as Horsley Medical Practice, or more informal settings such as a local coffee morning. Commitment may vary from weekly to monthly volunteering, at a specific location, depending on what suits each volunteer.

This role could suit someone who is a good listener, enjoys talking to different people, likes finding practical solutions to help and is able to research what support may be available (training will also be provided on this).

Neighbourhood Supporter

‘Matched’ with individuals who have been identified as needing additional help to access support or new activities.This may include residents with low confidence or who have physical or mental health needs. Support will vary in each situation but this may involve helping someone with transport, accompanying them to a new activity or simply offering encouragement. Commitment involves regularly meeting someone, ideally weekly, over a short-term. This may only be for a few weeks, but could be up to 3 months. After this duration, it is hoped that a volunteer will go on to support someone else but not necessarily immediately.

This role could suit someone who is confident visiting people independently, enjoys working 1-1 with vulnerable adults, is patient and compassionate.

Neighbourhood Link

Anyone who attends a one-off ‘signposting’ training session in order to have a better understanding of what is available to support people locally. This may include local businesses, professionals who have regular contact with the general public, or simply anyone who would like to be a help to their neighbours.

This role could suit: anyone!

 

For more information on getting involved, making a referral, or any other aspect of the project, contact:

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Rachel Guilford

Neighbourhood Angels Project - Guildford

 
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