Volunteering

VOLUNTEERING

You’ll need a DBS check – this is free and transferable so you’ll be able to use it if you decide to volunteer with any other vulnerable adults. No driving test is required.

We will give you information to provide to your insurance company so that driving as a volunteer should not affect your premiums.

You can drive as often and regularly, or as little and infrequently, as you wish. The Coordinator will call you with details of a job and if you can do it, great! If not, then the Coordinator will simply contact another volunteer.

Mileage and parking will be reimbursed.

Clients usually need transport to visit their GP or to go to the hospital or the shops or a coffee morning. Sometimes we are asked to go further afield, but if you want to stay local all you have to do is say.

A Coordinator takes calls from clients on a phone at home and then finds drivers from a list of volunteers. This could just be once a month or once a week – whatever you prefer.

We aim to help anyone who cannot access transport anywhere else or who cannot afford transport from other providers. Sometimes clients just need a companion to travel with them if they don’t have any relatives nearby.

 

WHAT OUR DRIVERS SAY

“I was recruited to be a “Good Neighbour” 3 years ago. The Chairman visited me to explain my duties and responsibilities. Our clients make a voluntary donation and we can claim our expenses. Steyning Good neighbours is contacted by a client who requires transport. The co-ordinator then contacts me as a good neighbour with details of the trip and timings and if I am willing and available, I take on the task – on average, I would say I am asked and can help about once or twice a fortnight.

The trips are varied from Steyning Health Centre to hospitals within Sussex. I have taken a client to Arundel where I watched as she had a lesson as part of the Riding for the Disabled Scheme. I have also taken a delightful lady to Dementia Care at Dial Post Village Hall. Her excitement and enthusiasm at seeing her beloved Downs was wonderful for me too.

All the clients I drive have one thing in common – huge gratitude for the service I give. They have wonderful stories and I always enjoy hearing about their lives past and present. I get as much out of our trip as they do.

Occasionally, I drive someone who has been a Good Neighbour themselves – the scheme has been in existence for 35 years and it reminds me that in the future I may well be a client myself. It feels good to be of assistance now while I can. If you can spare a very little time, even on an occasional basis, I would suggest you get as much pleasure from this service as I and my delightful clients do.”
Vanessa T

“Back at the beginning of the year I’d finished all the major projects I needed to do on my home and garden and felt I should really be using some of my free time on some form of volunteering within the community.

I opted for Good Neighbours for several reasons. I enjoy driving and it allows me to be flexible about taking on jobs to fit in with whatever’s already in my diary. Mostly importantly I enjoy meeting people and hearing their stories and histories and I couldn’t think of another form of community work which would bring me into contact with such a wide range of people.

I can safely say my expectations when I signed up have been well and truly exceeded. The very first job I did was taking a lady and her daughter to Haywards Heath Hospital and it was a joy to have them in the car. The journey very quickly turned from driving two strangers to hospital into going for a drive in the country with new friends. Since then I’ve met a wide range of people all of whom have made my journeys interesting and a pleasure. The passengers are invariably grateful for what we do and I find I’m equally appreciative for the privilege of meeting them. As one particularly grateful client said, “if you people didn’t exist, we’d have to invent you”.

People talk about health and wellbeing and I’ve found that the sense of wellbeing I get after taking people to their appointments and getting them safely home is very palpable and makes my day feel better.
As a rookie driver I’ve only looked after 19 people so far but I soon discovered what a wide range of ages, backgrounds and experiences they have. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed meeting every one of them.”
Patrick O

“While I was working my Mum used a community car scheme and it was a great help to me knowing that she could get to appointments without me having to keep taking time off work.  When I retired, I knew that I wanted to do some kind of voluntary work. I enjoy driving and meeting people and they do appreciate the service and extra help we can give.”
Liz T

“Standing out among the large number of helpful organisations in this area are the “Steyning Good Neighbours”. If you are elderly, infirm or disabled and  need transport to a medical appointment anywhere in Sussex, a shopping trip or the occasional social event our organisation will take you there in comfort  and wait  patiently to get you safely  home again for a moderate charge to cover petrol costs. We have been doing this for over thirty years and provide about thirty-five drives a week which get arranged at least two days in advance.

As a driver you are part of a friendly and committed group of volunteers who are available at times of their choice to make life easier for those less fortunate. In return you meet many different people with often interesting stories, and, experiencing the problems of restricted mobility at first hand  you may well appreciate your own independence even more. This is a very worthwhile and immediate  way of helping in the community, and your kindness gets you a big “Thank you” at the end.

To carry on with this much needed and appreciated help we are urgently looking for more drivers! Please phone Steyning Good Neighbours on 01903 816181. Thank you for getting in touch.”
Illa 

“I very much enjoy being a Steyning Good Neighbour. Not only am I helping the people of Steyning, but it is something I get great pleasure from. It gives me an opportunity to chat with many lovely and interesting people helping them get to appointments they might otherwise have problems getting to. I recommend highly anyone who feels they have some spare time to join us.”
Alan E

“I have been driving for Steyning Good Neighbours  for a year or two now, apart from being a necessary service for the clients l find it helpful because it is flexible, ie l am not committed to the same day each week so l can fit the jobs in around my  “life”.”
Janet B