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Tuesday, 11 August 2020

CHARITY TODAY AWARDS

Volunteero and Age UK partner to drive operational efficiency and promote client safety

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New volunteering app, Volunteero, has announced it will partner with Age UK Lambeth and Age UK Gateshead to more effectively deploy its volunteer force.

The mobile-based application – due to launch next month – has recently secured funding from Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency. Via Innovate UK’s Fast Start Competition, Volunteero was selected as one of the projects for support from over 8,600 funding applications.

Volunteero is piloting telephone befriending services between registered volunteers and older people supported by both Age UK Lambeth and Age UK Gateshead. All calls are made within the app without exposing the phone numbers of potentially vulnerable people. All calls are logged and where required, calls can be recorded. The volunteers also complete a mandatory report post-call to track the wellness of the client and flag anything critical. No more chasing volunteers for reports with regular reporting providing an early warning sign for the charity ensuring it can focus on serving the high-risk cases.

Volunteers must request approval from the charity to start the telephone befriending task, only once approved can they initiate a befriending call, further safeguarding any potential vulnerable people involved. Further, volunteers can view a short bio about the person to find common interests and improve the quality of the befriending relationship. Volunteers can also see previous call reports to ensure continuity among the charity’s volunteers.

Ashley Staines, co-founder of Volunteero, commented:

“Only 15% of people between the age of 25 and 34 volunteers at least once per month. This statistic really saddens us and why at Volunteero, we’ve set out to change this tragic truth. It’s such a fantastic opportunity to be working with these Age UK’s as we look to help them combat loneliness.

“In the current environment with social distancing measures still being enforced, the problem of loneliness has worsened dramatically. The impact of this further deteriorates the health condition of an already vulnerable generation. It’s, therefore, crucial to look after older members of society and do everything to help them through this difficult time.”

Graham Gardiner, CEO at Age UK Lambeth said:

“We’re very excited about the opportunity to work with Volunteero and the benefits we’re expecting to see. Operational efficiency and the safeguarding of our vulnerable clients are top priorities for us – Volunteero should really help us progress in both areas. The current crisis has put a strain on all frontline services, and at Age UK Lambeth we have worked hard to ensure we have responded quickly to the needs presented to us. Using Volunteero will help us increase our reach, make it easier for our volunteers to offer help and reassure my team that we are protecting the people we serve.”

Ian Wolstenholme, CEO at Age UK Gateshead said:

“We’re delighted to be working with Volunteero as we see a real opportunity for improved efficiency and safeguarding. It only takes a few minutes to pick up the phone and speak to an older person, but it makes a real difference in their life. Age UK is seeing an increased number of clients that require support and as a result, we are under increased strain as a result of COVID-19. We believe Volunteero has real potential remove a lot of manual work for us, make it easier for us to manage volunteers and most importantly, get more of our clients the social contact they so desperately need”

Volunteero plans to roll out the app to a significant number of charities and tens of thousands of potential volunteers in the coming months. Volunteers will be able to discover & sign up for charities on the app. Volunteers accepted by the charity can explore their available opportunities, join and complete them at their own pace.

The app will relieve the charity staff from repetitive tasks, through automation, insight reports, and notifications so they are always up to speed with the new developments of their volunteers and the people in their care. This offers improved visibility, and a streamlined workflow, enabling the charity to focus on higher-risk areas and more valuable tasks.

For more information please visit: https://www.volunteero.org/

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