Need help? Call us on 01727 830 713

St Albans Good Neighbours Scheme

Common questions from those seeking assistance, or to volunteer their time.

Good neighbours

Thinking of using the Scheme?

Q. Who can use the St Albans Good Neighbour Scheme?

A. Anyone who is elderly, unwell, lonely, disabled or facing a crisis and living in the St Albans district.

Q. How do I contact you to request help?

A. Ring our Helpline 01727 830 713 between 9am and 1pm any day of the year. You will be put through to our Duty Officer.

Q. How much do you charge?

A. We do not ‘charge’ those that use the Scheme but the drivers carry a collection box in their cars and we ask clients to make a donation as we are entirely dependent on voluntary contributions.

Q. How much notice do I need to give when requesting help?

A. Please give us notice of a week or more if possible for medical appointments, etc. However, we will always try to assist however short the notice.

Q. Can you take me to a hospital in London?

A. We are unable to drive clients to London hospitals but we would hope to be able to find a volunteer to accompany a client, using public transport or a taxi. The client, in this instance, would normally be expected to pay the volunteer’s fare as well as their own.

Q. How often can I use the Scheme?

A. Clients are usually limited to two requests for help a month, unless there are exceptional circumstances.

Thinking of volunteering with the Scheme?

Q. How do I apply to be a Volunteer?

A. You can print off our Application Form from our contact page or telephone our Helpline 01727 830 713 to speak to a Duty Officer who will pass your details to our Membership Secretary.

Q. Do I need any qualifications or experience?

A. No, our volunteers come from all walks of life and range from students to those in their 80’s. A friendly manner and a willingness to help others is all you need.

Q. How much time do I need to give?

A. Volunteering with SAGNS is extremely flexible. Whether you can offer a couple of hours now and then or a couple of days a week, we would be very grateful for your help. Duty Officers usually give a day a month (weekday or weekend) but as little as an hour or two now and then can be enough to provide valuable help to other sections of the Scheme.

Q. Can expenses be reclaimed?

A. Reimbursement for mileage, currently (40 pence per mile) and telephone calls (15 pence per call) are offered.

Q. When would I meet other volunteers?

A. Coffee mornings and tea parties are held for all volunteers, as well as an AGM each November. Newsletters are sent out three times a year to keep everyone in touch. Volunteers are encouraged to contact the Section Leaders or Committee members if they encounter any problems.

Q. Would I be required to raise money for the Scheme?

A. No, our volunteers help people directly - one to one - by providing transport, doing shopping or odd jobs, befriending, etc.