Good Neighbours Scheme

2017 AGM & Pub Grub Lunch

The Good Neighbours Group held their AGM on 26th April at the Ogilvie Sports Pavilion in Thorpeness, with a very good attendance by volunteers. Following official business, when the current Steering Group were re-elected en bloc, Dr Mike Powell-Evans, RSPB Voluntary Community Talks Officer, gave a talk with slides on encouraging more birds and wildlife to your garden. On April 28th, a pub lunch and get together was held in the new room at The Dolphin and much enjoyed by all. These are now on hold for a few months until after the busy season. Plans are afoot for the Annual Garden Party – watch this space!

The Minutes of the 2016 AGM on 14 June were approved at the AGM on 26th April. The Minutes of that meeting will be published in due course.


How the Scheme Works

The "Scheme Phone" is held on a rota basis by the volunteers.  When someone rings for assistance, the "Phone holder" will try to find someone from the volunteer list who can provide the requested help.  All the volunteers are from Aldringham or Thorpeness, they are insured by the scheme and have had the necessary Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks (formerly CRB - Criminal Record Bureau) .

Image of dog walking

How can we help?

Typical tasks that we aim to help with are:

Give you a lift (45p/mile)*
Collect a prescription
Help with shopping
Take you shopping
Visit for a chat

Look after/exercise your pet for a short time
Check Smoke alarm/change light bulb
Minor household repairs
Write a letter/fill a form in
Deliver a meal

If you need some help please telephone

07521 047 843

* There is a flat charge of £3 to Aldeburgh, £5 to Saxmundham and 45p per mile elsewhere within a (approx) 5 mile radius.

The suggested donation to cover petrol costs for lifts to Ipswich Hospital** and other medical facilities within this area is £25 for a round trip (£50 for a lengthy stay if separate volunteers are used for trips to and from the hospital), and £30 to James Paget Hospital.

Good Neighbours can supply Data Link containers for any parishioner who would like one to record your current medication, allergies and contact numbers for her doctors and next of kin.

Party RSVPs, requests for Data Link containers and any requests for help with minor tasks should go to the GN phone 07521 047 843.

Good Neighbours operates throughout the year, festivities notwithstanding, so if you have a small task you need help with, call 07521 047843 anytime and a volunteer will get back to you.

Pippa McLardy -  Chairperson

** There is absolutely no compunction for volunteers to agree to offer trips to the hospital if they feel the journey is too far or too time-consuming. The volunteer should feel justified in keeping this payment to cover the basic cost of fuel and wear and tear. Where the charge for a medically-related journey would cause financial hardship to the passenger, the volunteer driver can apply to the GN Steering Group for payment. Pro rata payments (at approximately 46p per mile) will be applied for other journeys. Any volunteer prepared to make the journey may apply to the Steering Group for a Volunteer Parking Permit at Ipswich Hospital.  These are specific to one vehicle and need to be re-applied for if the vehicle is changed.


The Aldringham cum Thorpe Good Neighbours Scheme was launched in February 2008, under the umbrella of Suffolk ACRE (now Community Action Suffolk). Through the Good Neighbours Scheme a group of volunteers provide occasional help to people in the parish.


Purpose

The purpose of the scheme is to provide occasional assistance to people in the villages of Aldringham and Thorpeness.  The range of help that can be offered is dependent on the number of volunteers that have joined the scheme and what type of help they can offer – typical tasks are shown below. 

Image of car with passengersIt is important to stress that the scheme is based on "best efforts", as it relies on the availability of the volunteers.  It is not a substitute for the usual medical or care services and it is not available 24 hours a day! Please remember that we will always try very hard to find someone who can help, but in some cases it might simply not be possible. 

Volunteers

Currently we have 31 volunteers in the scheme, including a steering group of 7 people. 

If you feel that you could also offer occasional help with some, or all of the tasks, please contact us. The more volunteers we have, the more effective the scheme will be! 

Current Steering Group members:

Pippa McLardy - Chairperson
Sydney Graham - Treasurer & Secretary
Pete Holmes
Jill Hubbard
Christine Laschet
Ben O'Dwyer
Mick Sturmey
Wendy Sturmey