Grampian Region 2020 Charity Selection

Befriend a Child is a local charity which supports children and young people growing up in difficult life circumstances across Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire to help them achieve their full potential and develop into confident and competent young adults.

We offer 1:1 and group befriending and mentoring programmes and projects for school aged children and young people. At the heart of what we do are committed and passionate volunteers who are trained and supported by our experienced staff team.

Through providing a positive adult role model and positive life experiences our volunteers help children and young people build confidence and self esteem as well as develop new life interests and skills. In time this can have a transformational effect and allow the child to deal positively with the challenges and realise their full potential.

Each year we support over 250 children and work with over 270 volunteers. There is an increasing demand for our services and we currently have a waiting list of 58 children. Our work has been recognised through several awards including The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, Befriending Network’s Quality in Befriending Award and Investing in Volunteers’ Award. Our team are committed to delivering excellence to the children, families and volunteers we support.

Our city-centre location is home to our staff team and houses quality facilities for use by the volunteers and children such as a kitchen, Playzone and media room. A report by Deloitte concluded that for every £1 we receive; we deliver £6.13 of benefits to young people and society.


Lucy's Story

Lucy was 6 years old when she was referred to Befriend a Child. Lucy’s mother passed away when she was very small and since she was 6 months old Lucy and her brother have lived with her grandmother.

It was felt that Lucy would benefit from having a befriender as her grandmother would often struggle to cope with her behaviour and, due to her age, was unable to stimulate her enthusiasm and curiosity in a constructive way. Furthermore, Lucy is a very friendly little girl and her grandmother worried that she had no concept of “stranger danger”. Lucy needed some 1:1 attention with a positive adult role model she could trust who could keep up with her bubbly personality and channel her energy in a productive way.

Lucy has been matched with a befriender for a year now and the relationship has been a huge success. Lucy’s befriender has opened the world up and offered experiences she otherwise would have missed out on such as horse riding, visits to the cinema and even the Pantomime at Christmas time. Lucy’s grandmother has been very grateful for the support and has noticed a visible difference and improvement in her granddaughter’s behaviour including her attitude towards strangers, something which her befriender has been working on. Lucy is more engaged with the world around her and thanks to her befriender the future is looking bright.

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