CARE NETWORK CAMBRIDGESHIRE
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Our mission is to help older, isolated and vulnerable people living in Cambridgeshire to stay independent and maintain social contact with friends and the community.
We work mainly with volunteers, helping people to set up local ‘good neighbour schemes’, and also running some cross-county schemes ourselves.
- Over 130 people are volunteer visitors with Care Network, taking practical help, support and companionship directly to people’s homes
- We network with over 100 local good neighbour schemes that both reduce isolation and improve independence and quality of life
- We train and advise volunteers and schemes to help them carry out their ‘good neighbour’ and 'community navigator' volunteering
- We participate in partnership bodies, and respond to consultations from statutory agencies, where these are relevant to the needs and aspirations of older and isolated residents.
Our vision is a Cambridgeshire where all older and vulnerable people at risk of isolation, loneliness or depression feel supported in their local community. We also want to enable people to support others, for their mutual benefit and to achieve greater independence for a healthier, happier life.
So what is a good neighbour scheme?
Any community group that offers good neighbourly help to other local residents – whether by getting together socially or helping with some practical tasks. Common examples include community car schemes, lunch clubs, social groups and mobile warden schemes. Read more about local groups on the community groups page.
So what is a community navigator?
A community navigator, is a volunteer who directs and signposts older and vulnerable people in their village and local area to activities and services that they may enjoy or find useful. To find out more see the community navigator page.
And what schemes does Care Network run directly?
Our Help at Home service offers
- Welcome Home from Hospital offering companionship and help in the first two to three weeks that a patient returns home after medical treatment
- Independance at Home service offers isolated, older and vulnerable adults help with small, usually one-off chores. Currently available in parts of the county only, and being extended right now.
- Admission Avoidance supports someone to remain at home when they could be at risk of hospital admission.
To find out more about our volunteer visiting schemes, click on our Help at Home page.
We estimate that, taking into account our volunteers, our direct clients and those indirect beneficiaries who attended or received services from the Good Neighbour Schemes that we supported, our work in 2011/12 improved quality of life for roughly 5,000 Cambridgeshire residents—that’s 11% of the 75+ population.