Bield in quest to reduce loneliness in Glasgow

A software solutions companies is lending a hand by offering Glasgow pensioners the chance to improve their IT skills.

Bield tenants at Eamont Lodge Court in Dowanhill, Armadale Court in Greenock and Elderslie Court in the city centre are logging on and linking up with the help of employees from Quest.

Volunteering twice per month during work hours, the 12 tech whizzes are allowing tenants to feel more connected while also reducing loneliness through social interaction.

Kevin Stanton, manager of Quest’s Scottish office, said: “We wanted to get involved with a local organisation that we could all relate to.

“Loneliness and care of our elder community is very important and as such we wanted to reach out to Bield to see how we could help. It is always really rewarding to give something back.”

Along with offering IT skills such as using Skype, online shopping and connecting with friends on Facebook, Quest volunteers are also helping to provide a range of activities for those looking for something a little less digital. Tenants can try their hand at a range of activities, including Spanish classes.

Joni Mitchell, volunteer development worker at Bield, said: “We have been totally blown away by the support from the staff who have signed up for the volunteer programme.

“Quest were looking to do something with a social conscious within the community, so approached us about volunteering.

“We are currently introducing the 12 members of staff to tenants, which is very exciting. We have lots of new skills and activities in store for tenants, including learning the basics of Skype and online shopping.

“These might seem like simple skills but they can make such a difference to older people, allowing them to age well and have more independence within their day to day lives.

“Volunteers get a great amount of satisfaction out of the time spent with tenants too. Just an hour of two a week can be so rewarding.

“Even though our Silver Surfer opportunities have been successful, IT isn’t just what we offer tenants. From crafts to fitness, if an individual has a passion or an area of expertise then we are more than happy for them to share it with our tenants.

“No matter how big or small your contribution, you will be making a difference to the lives of older people.”

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