Frequently asked questions
We hope you find the answer to your questions below, if not please get in touch.
Together Talks is not a professional counselling or therapy service. Our Volunteer Telephone Befrienders are not trained counsellors or therapists.
No. This service aims to capture volunteers who have their own telephone. Ideally, you will have unlimited minutes on your personal mobile so the calls should not cost you anything. Please note that we are unable to offer expenses for any telephone call made.
Before committing to an application, you may wish to consider the amount of free minutes you have available with your telephone network provider.
The Together Talks Support Team is available Monday to Friday between: 09:30am to 4:30pm, so we ask that you arrange calls with your Befriendee during these times, too. This is so we can provide support to you when needed and act immediately to any welfare concerns.
We recommend starting with no more than 1 Befriendee, with whom you arrange a weekly call. Should you have further capacity, please liaise with the Together Talks Support Team via the contact email: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01274 952200.
You should always make sure that your telephone number is not visible when you make a call to a Befriendee. All Befriendees are made aware that calls from their Telephone Befriender will show as ‘No Caller ID’, ‘Private Number’ or 'Number Withheld'.
Withholding your number means that it will not be visible to the receiver. Instructions on how to do this will be provided as part of your training.
It is important to remember that this service is for telephone only.
This is stated in the Together Talks Code of Conduct, which you will be asked to agree to before we are able to appoint you as a Telephone Befriender.
The email address that you register with us will be made available to the Together Talks Support Team only. This provides us with a route to help and support you, and to send you relevant information and updates.
If your availability changes due to a return to work after a period of leave (i.e. furlough), then we ask that you inform the Together Talks Support Team immediately. This will allow for any Befriendees to be allocated to a different volunteer, who can then continue your great work.
If it is non-urgent query, inform the Together Talks Support Team who will then try to answer the question.
Tell your Befriendee that you are not sure but will find out and relay the information back to them on your next call, unless the answer is needed urgently, in which case you can let them know that you will try to find out and get back to them that day. Always remember to follow up within the agreed timescale.
If you have any concerns about the safety or welfare of a Befriendee, then you must inform the Together Talks Support Team immediately. The earlier we are informed, the quicker we can respond.
Remember that the Together Talks Support Team is available Monday to Friday, between the hours of 9:30am and 4:30pm.
However, if you consider there to be a threat to life, you must dial 999.
You will also receive online training and support, and be provided with a Telephone Befriender’s Handbook, which will guide you through various scenarios.
This is not an advice service, however, as things are changing rapidly, it is possible that the support need of a Befriendee will change over time.
Your Together Talks Support Team are consistently collating and updating a central list of resources and local services, such as local food delivery schemes, helplines, benefits advice, parenting and carers support services etc. This is an ever changing and growing list, but we will always provide you with any updated versions, as and when they become available.
No. You should not ask a Befriendee for their address or any other form of contact.