2018 was an exciting year for our team at Homewise. Not only did our team of 50 grow to more than 70 staff, but we also made new friends through our volunteering time with local charities.
We regularly meet new people through our Home for Life Plan and work hard to help people ‘retire happy’ using the plan and our Move Simply service, but we wanted to help those who aren’t looking to move home too! In 2018 we met Emily Kenward; she founded Time to Talk Befriending.
Time to Talk Befriending is a Sussex-based charity focused on tackling loneliness in the older community, and we were fortunate to be invited to volunteer with her team throughout the year. During these sessions we made a new friend in Bill, a visually-impaired veteran living in a local Worthing care home.
Bill is like many others that the charity helps with their intergenerational befriending services; he can feel isolated and missed socially interacting with others. He valued our visits and shared many stories of his time in the Navy, his experiences managing a local football team and the years he spent living abroad.
“Bill inspired our team and so we challenged ourselves to walk a mile, or 10K, in his shoes. We wanted to raise awareness and funds to support the charity so they could continue their Worthing trial on a permanent basis. This challenge was a great opportunity for both.” Charlotte Embleton, Office Manager – Homewise
Read all about the Big Blind Run challenge and how the Homewise team conquered 950km for Time to Talk Befriending. The money raised will go towards hiring a new permanent staff member, ensuring their befriending services are not limited to Brighton and Hove, but will run in the Worthing community as well.
“Here at Homewise we’re committed to causes affecting the older community and, having spent time volunteering with Time to Talk Befriending myself, I can’t think of a greater way to support our community in Worthing. I’m so proud of everyone and the passion and dedication they’ve put in to raising money for a wonderful cause.” Mark Neal, Managing Director - Homewise
Recently Mark Neal, Managing Director at Homewise, and a few members of the Homewise team joined Time to Talk Befriending at their monthly tea party in Portslade. The older residents really look forward to the charity’s tea parties and it was fantastic to see the group activities in action.
The regular events provide a relaxed environment for socialising with wider community and without these days, many residents might not be able to meet and enjoy the company of others.
Mark presented Emily with the Homewise donation cheque at the tea party. In total, we raised £5,211.39 for their cause.
“The support and encouragement from Homewise has meant a lot to me personally and to the Trustees and staff team here at Time to Talk Befriending. On the 10th December 2018, the Charity celebrated 5 years of operation so the incredible £5k raised seems very fitting and will go a long way to helping us sustain our work with older people.
This type of fundraising is invaluable to us as a charity. Most of the money raised will go straight to the front line helping us to continue to build connections and bring a sense of belonging to older people who otherwise would go for weeks or months at a time with minimal or no human contact.
Not only did staff volunteer their time to befriend one of our scheme members last year, but they went above and beyond to raise money through the Big Blind Run event and smaller activities, all to help us expand our work in to neighbouring Worthing. A big thank you to all involved; through this huge fundraising activity, we truly are tackling the issue of loneliness together.” Emily Kenward, Founder and CEO – Time to Talk Befriending
Watch our interview with Emily from 2018 to learn more about the charity and how your donations would support the older community for many years to come.
Learn how you can support Time to Talk Befriending over on their website.
Raising awareness in the community, Homewise and Time to Talk Befriending have been featured in the local news:
- Time to Talk Befriending and Homewise ‘truly tackling loneliness together’
- Homewise staff achieve ‘great feat’ with The Big Blind Run 2018 for Time to Talk Befriending
- Homewise staff set out to raise funds to save Worthing befriending scheme
- Lifeline befriending charity pledged £10,000 to secure Worthing service
Are you looking to join a growing company with a passion for supporting local charities? We could have the perfect role for you, just take a look at our current vacancies and send your CV to our recruitment team today!