We surveyed 113 volunteers, and interviewed a further three, to find out about their experiences of volunteering, as well as their views on the impact of our tea parties and call companions. As a charity we conduct regular evaluations in order to better understand the views and experiences of our guests and volunteers. Thank you to the volunteers who gave up their time to take part in this important work.
The results told us that being a Re-engage volunteer is very rewarding and that many of our volunteers experience positive benefits, including opportunities to develop their skills.
96% told us that since becoming a Re-engage volunteer they feel they are “giving something back”.
“I like spoiling my guests. They spend the whole week scrimping and saving and not having much food for the week. I make sure they have anything they want when they come out.”
88% told us that they have experienced an increase in personal happiness through volunteering.
“I like being with people, meeting people, helping people.”
53% told us that their well-being has improved.
“This is fulfilling something for me. I work in insurance and I get something out of it as much as the older people.”
Many volunteers get enjoyment from volunteering and connecting with different people.
57% reported that they now feel more a part of the community they live in as a result of volunteering with Re-engage.
Volunteers told us about the importance of conversation and how they benefit from the friendships they develop.
76% told us that they have made friends with older guests.
“It's such an outlet, we do nothing but talk really.”
Many volunteers have developed a variety of skills through volunteering with Re-engage.
75% told us that they have become more aware of the issues facing older people.
The words most frequently used to describe Re-engage services included “friendship”, “laughter” “fun”, “welcoming” and “friendly.”
Our LGBT research
In July we launched an exploratory research project to hear about the types of social activity groups and services LGBT+ people aged 70+ would like to take part in. Our research shows a clear desire for more groups and services specifically for the LGBT+ community.
Our tea parties are back
The Thurrock Re-engage tea party group 1 got together for their first tea party after eighteen long months apart during the pandemic. There were celebrations all around as the group toasted their sixth anniversary as well as the 99th birthday of one tea party guest.