The OPAL Service - West Lothian
Helping older people to stay independent, active, connected and to increase well-being.
Cyrenians OPAL (Older People, Active Lives) service aims to maintain or increase older people’s independence and well-being across the West Lothian Council area. It’s delivered in association with West Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership by a team of dedicated, trained volunteers who offer encouragement, companionship and support to help older people engage in social, leisure and community activities for a period of up to 9 months.
Who do we support?
OPAL supports people typically aged 60 and above who are living in the West Lothian council area, who would like to increase their confidence, reduce loneliness and isolation and connect with their local community.
Our volunteers offer support and encouragement to attend a variety of local groups/activities or events where they can meet new people. They can also offer support to build confidence again with using public transport or shopping independently following a fall or a stay in hospital.
What services are available?
- Telephone Befriending - This service provides a weekly friendship call and offers the older person the opportunity to develop a trusting relationship through conversation.
- Accompaniment/introduction to local groups or social activities - A volunteer can help to identify groups/activities or events available in the local area that may be of interest. The volunteer may also offer accompaniment to build confidence to attend alone.
- One-to-one support to build confidence with something specific - Volunteer support is offered when assistance is required to rebuild confidence with a specific task, aim or goal. This could be after hospitalisation or for example a fall, recent bereavement or support to use public transport independently again.
- Groups – We deliver a variety of group activities in the West Lothian Council area for those typically aged 60 and above where there is the opportunity to meet new people in a friendly setting on a regular basis.
We have a dedicated team of volunteers who are essential in ensuring we deliver our services successfully. We’re always looking for more volunteers to join us!
Our volunteers give their valuable time to our clients and do this in a variety of ways including:
- Encouraging them to go for a walk
- Accompanying them to local groups
- Voluntary driving
- Making weekly friendship telephone calls
- Listening and understanding
- Helping to make small changes that make a big difference
Our association with My Guide (who are part of Guide Dogs) allows us to train our volunteers to confidently assist people who have a visual impairment. In addition, our Best Practice Dementia Care training offers volunteers a more enhanced level of dementia training.
All our volunteers are PVG checked by Disclosure Scotland, trained and receive regular support.
If you could help us by lending us your time and skills to make a real difference, please get in touch.
How to access our services?
If you or someone you know would like to find out more about our services or would like to volunteer with us please get in touch by:
Calling 01506 815 815 or email email@example.com
Contact us, keep up-to-date with the service & find out about our volunteer opportunities via our Facebook page.
Volunteering with Cyrenians OPAL
Cyrenians Befriending Service is provided by volunteers. They are essential in ensuring we deliver this successfully and we’re always looking for suitable people. If you could help us by lending us your time and skills to make a real difference, get in touch.
What is it like to volunteer with Cyrenians OPAL Service?
Please listen to Laura, who is one of our volunteers, talking about her personal experience of volunteering and how rewarding it has been:
Experience the benefits of OPAL
Please watch our client’s video and hear how she has benefitted from our telephone service and the difference it has made.