“I get to make friends and be with people who support and understand me.”
“I can access public transport easier, I’m more verbal and started building relationships and interacting with my peers.”
RFA’s mentoring and Befriending service connects an autistic person with a volunteer. Together they identify goals and area to focus on and work towards those as part of the support.
Our community tells us that the social experiences and interaction of many autistic people is limited to their immediate family and educational settings. Having a volunteer offers an opportunity to build a relationship with someone who understands autism and is outside of these environments. A volunteer mentor/befriender will help with engaging with the community, going on local outings where possible, developing social networks and creating a positive relationship.
Common areas individuals chose to focus the support includes, though is not limited to: trying new hobbies and having fun, development personal life skills such as travel, training and healthy eating habits, planning and executing transitions and build confidence and self-esteem and many others.
All our volunteers are autism trained and receive on-going support and supervision.
The individuals we support tell us that Having a Mentor/ Befriender had been beneficial to their engagement, confidence, health and well-being and many other areas…
“My volunteer mentor helped me rediscover the fire inside myself again”
“On a scale of 1-10, I enjoyed the session 15!”
Some practical information:
This service is offered in London and the West Midlands.
Befriending and mentoring takes place at the person’s home and in their local community. When appropriate for the individual we can offer online video call and phone support.
Meets are on a regular (weekly/fortnightly) basis for up to 6 months. It can be face to face or online.
The service is free.
For more information, please contact us on 020 8458 3259.
If you would like to access this service, please fill in the referral form below and someone from the team will be in touch.