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Befriending

About BfriendsHappy girl with butterflies and befriender

Friendship plays a crucial part in all of our lives and CHILDREN 1ST aims to be there for vulnerable young people to help them change their lives for the better.

Our befriending services match up young people living in difficult circumstances with a trained and supportive adult volunteer who will be a positive role model in their lives.

Many of the children referred to us are burdened by extra responsibilities; they may be caring for an ill or disabled parent or forced to look after younger siblings due to their parents' drug or alcohol misuse. Many have chaotic home lives and desperately need a stable supportive adult to be there just for them.

Going to the cinema, playing board games, baking, going on outings or just being the centre of an adult volunteer befriender's attention once a week can help make a child feel loved, cared for and supported, and make a real difference to their lives.

Our experience

CHILDREN 1ST has over 30 years experience in providing befriending services for vulnerable children and young people. bfriends is one of the first services in Scotland to gain the Quality in Befriending Award from Befriending Networks, the approved provider of standards for mentoring and befriending. This means that we are nationally recognised for our safe and effective practice in providing befriending services to children and young people.

We currently deliver Bfriends in Edinburgh.

What people say about it

“I really enjoyed being part of a team and an organisation where you felt you were benefiting others. You're actually doing something and you see directly what difference you make. For a young person, this experience could affect them for the rest of their lives." Jane, Bfriends volunteer

"The befriender was a real rock for my son when he most needed her. It was great that she was there for him from start to finish - he's not a wee boy any more and she's helped him to be more confident...she also gave me a lot of support and I'll miss her." Mum of 12-year-old matched with befriender for 18 months.

Find out more about volunteering for CHILDREN 1ST.