Reading Friends Volunteer

The Reading Friends programme connects people by
starting conversations through reading. Reading inspires people to share
stories, interests and life experiences.

Reading Friends is all about reading, whether that’s
books, magazines, newspapers, or anything else, chatting together and having
fun. You don’t have to be an expert in literature to take part. All that’s
needed is a love of reading and a desire to help people feel more connected in
their community.

As a Reading Befriender, you’ll be helping to tackle
loneliness in your local community by using books and reading to share stories
and start conversations over the telephone.

Reading Friends is a national programme developed by
the Reading Agency and administered in Stockton by Stockton Borough Libraries


This role is home-based


To make a weekly phone call to an individual who has
registered to use the service.

To carry out a 30-60 minute phone conversation with
a focus on reading but not exclusive to reading.

To provide a listening ear and friendly voice to
people who may be feeling lonely.

provide a non-judgemental, open minded environment for the individual to share
their thoughts.

To raise any concerns
to the Reading Friends co-ordinator should any additional needs or services be

Knowledge & Skills

A love of reading and the desire to share this with
others. We will aim to
match you with a service user with similar interests.

Good communication and listening skills with the
ability to build rapport through conversation.

The ability to identify where concerns need to be
raised with the Reading Friends Co-ordinator.

Patient and sensitive approach and the ability to
empathise with people.

The confidence to read to others.

Ability to follow guidelines/instructions.

Have the
initiative to work without supervision

Personal Qualities

· A friendly and welcoming manner.

Open minded and non-judgemental attitude.

Reliable and trustworthy.

General Requirements


All volunteers will
receive an induction. Regular supervision sessions will be provided for ongoing
support and development.

Reading Friends volunteer induction training.

Any ongoing training identified through the
duration of this project.


This role is flexible and minimum commitment
will be 1 hour per week. Volunteers will be allocated individuals based on
shared interests.

This role will require a basic DBS check (paid
for by Stockton Borough Council)


Please complete the form below to register your interest in the opportunity.