SOMETIMES all an elderly person needs is a hand changing a light bulb or a lift to the shops to get some essentials.
It takes just a little bit of time from volunteers at the Christ Church Good Neighbours, but can make the world of difference to the life of the person they are helping.
The two dozen volunteers, based at Christ Church, in London Road, Widley, help those who need it – from elderly people to young mums.
From driving people to appointments, sitting with them at hospital, helping with small household chores or just listening as a friend, help is on hand
Volunteers are available from 8am until 8pm every day, for anyone to call for help.
Mary Ellis, from Widley, was delighted to have help from co-ordinator Molly Scarth after a nasty fall meant she couldn’t drive for six weeks.
The 77-year-old said: ‘It’s a marvellous scheme. It was an immediate response and very friendly. We can make a small donation to them too, which makes you feel better because you’re giving back for something they’ve done for you.’
George Clark lost his wife Pam in January after nearly 60 years together.
To help him through it he is receiving bereavement counselling through the service.
Mr Clark, 80, from Purbrook, said: ‘We had been married for 58 years, so you can imagine that I miss her.
‘It’s pleasant to meet all these good-hearted people.
‘These people are carrying out the work of the church and their beliefs and making a favourable impression on you and lifting your spirits.’
Christ Church Good Neighbours was originally formed out of the church’s pastoral team, who helped those in the congregation with needs.
It has now expanded to include volunteers and clients who aren’t church members.
Mrs Scarth is one of three in the group to organise who the volunteers go to help.
She said: ‘If somebody can cheer them up it makes a big difference.
‘It’s about people keeping their independence, but helping them when they need us. And because you’re a Christian you want to help.’
For more details visit christchurchportsdown.org, call 07842 367490 or visit goodneighbours.org.uk.