BeFriender’s Programme

To be a BeFriender volunteer, please sign up with us via the volunteer form in http://www.guidedogs.org.sg/support-us/

BeFriender’s

The goal of the Befrienders Project is to increase the quality of life of people with visual impairments (VI) through activities (e.g. shopping, going to a new place to eat) that encourage independence.

We seek to do this by pairing our beneficiaries with volunteers on a one-to-one basis. Volunteers are to take up the role of a friend and provide support while allowing the person with VI to participate in activities independently. The activities are dependent on the interests of the client and the befriender. Volunteers are also encouraged to build a relationship with their partners on a personal level.

Some of our beneficiaries have stated that they would like to go out for walks, shopping or food, but lack the courage to do so as they do not know their way around unfamiliar places. As a befriender, you would be able to aid people with VI and enlarge the world they live in. Going out to these activities would mean that they are getting more training in the use of their white cane, getting more exercise, and thus getting more confident in their own skills.

Requirements

– Above the age of 30
– Can commit to a minimum of 6 months
– A background check is to be done on each volunteer
– willing to participate in outings at least once a month
– able to communicate with their partner through phone or text once a fortnight

Process

To prepare for the Befrienders Programme, volunteers would be required to attend a one day orientation session.

Volunteers are required to contact their partner within 1 week of the orientation, and is required to call twice a month and go out with the beneficiaries once a month.

To encourage active learning, volunteers are required to complete a reflection sheet after each contact with the beneficiaries, and the review will be done every 2 months.

Interested? Talk to us.

Visual impairment (VI) is not a hindrance for a person to live an active and productive life. Understanding and acceptance from the public builds a VI-friendly society. We actively reach out to the public to dispel myths and misconceptions of guide dogs and the visually impaired people and increase the acceptance of the use of guide dogs in Singapore. Talks and sighted guide techniques are conducted upon requests by companies and schools.

It can be an interesting educational talk for your employees and students. Contact us to find out more.