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Volunteers delivering wellbeing by phone | Discover

Words of encouragement from those participating

Pierre (pictured) is one of the volunteers participating in Active Chats. He lives in the local area, with his job as a physiotherapist having allowed him to become a functional part of his community, and is full of praise for the initiative. “With isolation and loneliness such an issue during a lockdown, the opportunity to have some human interaction feels so precious and valuable,” says Pierre.

“It’s highly satisfying to be giving something back. My job has enabled me to witness the clear physiological and psychological benefits of exercise. Active Chats allow me to transfer that skill-set to the benefit of the user. It works the other way around, too, in that I’m getting some valuable life and recipe advice in return, and striking up some great friendships.”

One such friendship is with Joan, who can testify to the benefits of Active Chats and speaking to Pierre. “He is such a lovely man,” says Joan. “We have a good chat and he goes through the exercises with me, saying ‘I’m doing them with you!’ He makes a joke of it and we have a laugh. I used to get a lot of neck pain, but the exercises he’s taught me have been great. I try and do them every day and it really has helped.”

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