Re-Engage, a charity dedicated to reducing social isolation and loneliness in those aged 75 and over across the UK are expanding in Birmingham and are seeking new volunteers and those who may be interested in Re-Engage services to come forward.

Their monthly social activity groups involve light movement-based activity such as boccia, cornhole, in-door skittles and much more, as well as an opportunity for social chit chat.

Long term volunteer Jane McKiernan, pivotal in both tea-parties and activity groups, said of volunteering with Re-Engage:

“I started to volunteer with Reengage about 10 years ago. I wanted to do something that took me away from the work grind, and as my own extended family lived some distance away, wanted to meet the older generation that I missed on a regular basis.

Volunteering with Reengage brings many benefits, I’ve made friends with other volunteers from different backgrounds and with our guests, who have shared their life experiences. Who would know that the lady who now uses walking sticks used to be a ballerina, or that our grey-haired guest once upon a time got on her bike and as a community midwife delivered what seems to be half the population in the area! It’s a reminder to me that everyone has their story if we take the opportunity to stop and listen.

Many of our guests have lost daily and regular contact with their peers but they haven’t lost their ability to laugh and to show compassion themselves. It’s rewarding to know that we can provide an afternoon of entertainment and friendship and I shouldn’t be so surprised when a guest asks about my well-being and remembers an event in my life.

Why not join us as a volunteer, bringing people together who would otherwise have been alone?”

Volunteer with Re-Engage

Re-Engage are developing new activity groups all the time, they may very well be developing one near you! Why not work with them to get a new group up and running in your local community?

Shammie Robshaw-Bryan, Birmingham Engagement Officer, says of volunteering:

“We’re always looking for volunteers to help us in our mission of reducing social isolation and loneliness in our communities, and together we can work towards this goal. We understand pressures on time and life, so all our roles are in varying amounts of time commitment to fit around work and life. It’s only thanks to incredible volunteers like Jane that we are able to help as many older isolated adults as we are.

In our 22/23 impact report, 99% of volunteers feel like they are 'making a difference to somebody' because of volunteering with Re-engage, and I think that is a pretty significant number!

All services are free of charge, and in addition to activity groups, Re-Engage also offers popular Tea Party groups and telephone befriending service, Call Companions.

Re-Engage Volunteering Roles with urgent need

Activity Groups

  • Activity Group Coordinator: As an activity group coordinator, you’ll plan, organise and schedule monthly activity groups in your local area. This is an administrative role that requires communicating and socialising with older people and volunteers from all walks of life.
  • Activity Group Helper: As an activity group lead, you’ll take turns leading the monthly session and support the other activity group leads when it’s their turn to lead. You’ll also socialise with the older people at the activity group, ensuring that everyone feels supported and listened to.
  • Activity Group Driver: As an activity group driver, you’ll collect older people from their homes, accompany them to the monthly activity group and drop them home again afterwards.

Call Companion

As a call companion you’ll make regular telephone calls to an older person experiencing loneliness and isolation. These friendly chats provide a lifeline of friendship for older people and a vital link with the outside world from which they’ve become isolated.

How to sign up to volunteer with Re-Engage

If you are interested in signing up as an activity group volunteer or helping to get a new group up and running, or any of the other volunteering opportunities, head to the Re-Engage website to find out more:

How to refer into Re-Engage services

If you are interested in joining an activity group, or if you know someone aged 75 and over who is lonely, isolated or in need of companionship in the Birmingham area who could benefit from going along to an activity group, call 0800 716 543 (freephone) or you can sign up to join an activity group here: