YOPEY Befriender enters its 4th year
YOPEY Befriender grew greatly in the autumn of 2016. We started new schemes in Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk – see stories below – as well as recruiting new YOPEY Befrienders for our established schemes in Watford, Nottingham and Bury St Edmunds.
We also trialled a new style of YOPEY Befriender scheme for younger pupils with Year 10s from Watford Girls Grammar going into a care home for a half-day introduction to YOPEY Befriender in the hope that they will want to return regularly when they are sixth-formers.
YOPEY founder Tony Gearing was so inspiring at the girls' assembly that over 90 out of 150 girls asked to take part in this scheme and YOPEY is organising five half-day visits to Runwood care home Greenbanks to accommodate so many volunteers.
We also did the same trial with 20 Year 10s from All Saints Catholic Academy in Mansfield, Notts, going into local Runwood care home Maun View. They enjoyed the visit so much that they have volunteered to go back and help with the care home's next party for the elderly residents.
Record 91 from one school befriend
A record number of ‘YOPEY Befrienders’ from a Watford school have visited a care home in the town and started friendships with elderly residents, many of them with dementia and some of them lonely.
YOPEY stands for Young People of the Year and YOPEY Befrienders are schoolchildren trained to relate to people with dementia and visit them in care homes.
YOPEY founder Tony Gearing gave an assembly to 150 14-15 year-olds at Watford Grammar School for Girls and about two-thirds volunteered to become YOPEY Befrienders and visit Greenbanks
Asda donates £500 to Mansfield scheme
Photographs by Tom Allaway
A Mansfield supermarket has given £500 to a charity that recruits and supports schoolchildren to befriend elderly people in care homes.
YOPEY Befriender won Asda’s Green Token Giving, where shoppers vote for their favourite good cause. Shoppers at the Old Mill Lane superstore dropped thousands of tokens into the good cause’s box over three months.
YOPEY Befriender is run by the charity YOPEY, which stands for Young People of the Year. The scheme involves young people being taught to
Girls win Harry Potter studio tours
Shubhangi Mehta and Himeno Niimi were chosen as the winners of two tickets each to visit Warner Bros Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter.
Both girls, year 10 pupils at Watford Grammar School for Girls, wrote lovely pieces about their visits to Runwood's Greenbanks care home in Watford.
The beautiful essay by Shubhangi Mehta, left in photograph, is below on this page under the headline:Beautiful words about befriending from a 15-year-old...
Himeno wrote: "I had a wonderful opportunity of visiting the Greenbanks care home where...
YOPEY Befriender is a 'Raising the Bar' finalist
A ‘YOPEY Befriender’ from Bury St Edmunds was a finalist in the Suffolk ‘Raising the Bar’ awards.
Tilly Watts, a year 11 pupil at County Upper School, was a finalist in the category Inspirational Young Person of the Year.
The Raising the Bar awards are put on by Suffolk County Council to celebrate excellence among young people and education and aimed at driving the county’s educational attainment climb up the national tables. They were put on at Trinity Park in Ipswich last night (Monday 26
Beautiful words about befriending from a 15-year-old...
By Shubhangi Mehta, Year 10, Watford Grammar School for Girls
'MY INTRODUCTION TO YOPEY BEFRIENDER'
YOPEY has offered me a unique opportunity and through it I have gained an invaluable insight as to how to approach, and start a conversation with a person suffering from Dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
The experience was truly heart-warming, and the constant encouragement and friendliness of the staff helped me to overcome my
YOPEY Befriender interviewed on BBC radio
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After having had high tea with the High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire and residents at Leawood Manor care home, one of the YOPEY Befrienders, Lola Smith, was interviewed by BBC Radio Nottingham for its busy drive-time show. You can listen here......
High tea with High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire
Photographs by Chris Penfold
The High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire has praised 30 teenagers from Rushcliffe School who give companionship to care home residents and continue to visit even after an elderly friend dies.
High tea with High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire – part 2
Photographs by Tom Allaway
We had two photographers from Rushcliffe Photographic Society at Leawood Manor when seven YOPEY Befrienders from Rushcliffe School came for high tea with the High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire and residents, relatives and staff of the Runwood care home.
Here are some of Tom Allaway's photographs. To take a free jpeg open the gallery on the left, choose your image, right click and download.
Norfolk: another high tea with a different high sheriff
Photographs by Paul Sanwell
The High Sheriff of Norfolk has praised a dozen teenagers from Wymondham High School who give companionship to care home residents in their town.
Sixth-formers from the Folly Road school visit residents at Windmill House in Browick Road – where they spend an hour or so each week chatting to them, exchanging news and encouraging them to share their memories. Many of the residents have dementia but the young people are taught to see the person and not the disease, but also how to cope