Information for volunteers
Why get involved?
Over 80% of older people in Oxford report feeling ignored by society. Loneliness had a severe impact on physical and mental health with research showing it to be as damaging as smoking.
Intergenerational contact is extremely effective in helping isolated people feel in touch with their local communities and society as a whole. LinkAges believe you play a vital role in preventing loneliness and the vulnerability it can cause.
There are a number of different ways that you can get involved as a LinkAges volunteer! Keep reading to find out:
Health Walk Leader
Walking for Health is part of England’s largest network of health walk schemes, helping all kinds of people to lead a more active lifestyle. Our walks are led by friendly, knowledgeable people, specially trained for the job.
Along with fellow walkers, our walk leaders provide all the advice and encouragement a new walker needs to build fitness at a pace that’s right for them. In just a short time, a small amount of regular exercise can significantly improve a person’s health, well-being and confidence.
Sign up now to take part in a one day Health Walk leader training course in September!
Once trained you can then either support Oxford City Council's walking schedule by leading their current walks, or work with them to set up new walks around the city. Current walks run weekly from Summertown, Hinksey Park, Donnington, Jericho, Bury Knowle Park and University Parks.
Come along to a Dementia Daybreak day centre to join in with the guests' activities, which may include word puzzles, crafts or reminiscence. They're really keen on finding any musical or artistic people to help with running activities too!
Jericho: Mondays and Tuesdays, 10-11.30am or 1.30-3pm.
Blackbird Leys: Monday to Friday 1-3pm.
Stay for as long or little as you'd like!
Computers, tablets and smartphones are great ways for older people to stay connected with friends, families and their communities, but many people lack basic IT skills. Come along to help teach these skills in regular classes run by the Oxford Hub and the 50+ Network.
IT Classes will resume in the autumn.
Get involved as an activity assistant at Isis House! The care homes are looking for volunteers to go along and help out with their daily activities. Activities include bingo, arts and crafts, cooking, nail painting, puzzles and more!
This opportunity is flexible and days/times are arranged directly with the home.
Note: as this opportunity involved working with vulnerable adults, the care homes require a longer application procedure. Volunteers wanting to help at the homes will need to complete an application form, undergo a DBS check and participate in an interview and training session.
We also match individual volunteers with an older person in Oxford so that they can form long-term friendships and undertake fun activities together. By doing this, volunteers can help older people in the city to be active and do things that they may be less able to do without company.
In collaboration with Age UK, volunteers will receive training, then be introduced to their match and receive ongoing support and trouble shooting from the team at the Hub. When you first meet your match, you will write create a list of things that you want to do together, whether that be going for afternoon tea, lunch clubs, IT classes or going to the theatre together.
Pairs will then meet once a week at a time that suits them and do a range of activities together. We are looking for volunteers who are willing to commit 2-3 hours a week for a minimum of a year, with the opportunity to continue.
There are a number of LinkAges projects that you can get involved in. We ask that you attend a minimum of 1 session per month for your chosen activity, as our community partners and the older people you will be volunteering with will benefit most from consistent and reliable visits. The exception is LinkAges Connect where the volunteering commitment is more regular.
You can specify which opportunity you would like to take part in when you sign up!
Activities are taking a break for the summer vacation but will be relaunching in September, so you are welcome to sign up and we will get in touch then with information about next steps.
Oxford Hub is committed to making our activities inclusive to everyone. We can make reasonable adjustments to application processes, training sessions, volunteering projects and other activities, and can reimburse expenses such as bus tickets. We also provide ongoing support for the people we work with, so if you have particular accessibility needs, including special educational needs, please do get in touch at email@example.com and let us know how we can make the activity more accessible.