Revival needs befriending volunteers

Revival is looking for volunteers in Newcastle under Lyme for it’s befriending service.

The service has been very successful in Stoke and is now being rolled out across Newcastle.

The service matches volunteers with elderly or vulnerable customers who are feeling lonely or isolated to help them continue to live independently, by taking them out and about to appointments or for a walk or visiting them at home for a cuppa and a chat.

Valarie Oakes, a retired teacher and accomplished golf player, lives on her own in Newcastle under Lyme and contacted the Revival befriending service because she felt lonely at home on her own all day.

“Being in the house all day and not being able to do very much…it did become very depressing at one stage, but now I have people coming to see me, it makes it much better.”

Valarie was matched with volunteer Karen Bethell who visits once a week. The two chat over a cup of tea and a slice of cake. They often play games together and Valarie is teaching Karen how to play bridge.

Valarie said: “I look forward to her company – she makes me laugh and enjoys looking at my old photographs.”

Karen has MS and had to give up work but still likes to keep busy.

She said: “I’d worked all my life and I just thought it would be nice to volunteer for something. I’m limited with what I could volunteer for really and I thought what I would really like to do is a befriending type of thing.”

“We just chat like the good friends we are. She listens to my problems and promises not to tell anyone my secrets” laughs Karen.

“She likes me to tell her what’s going on in my life as it takes her mind off her pains and her worries.”

The Revival befriending service is looking for more volunteers in Newcastle under Lyme like Karen who can help lonely and vulnerable customers like Valarie. If you could befriend someone for a couple of hours a week call Revival on 0333 014 3389 or email


Watch the full video of Valarie and Karen’s interview below:





Revival. 308 London Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST4 5AB