This section will look at different ways you can stay connected with your friends and how you can connect with new people in your community.
Depending on whether you are doing activities in the community with your friends or by yourself. It is good to find out more information on what it is you would like to do.
Facilities in the community
When out and about in your community there are different facilities you can use, either with your friends or where you can meet new people
Facilities you can use:
- Cinema- watch a movie with a friend
- Park- go for a walk/run with a friend
- Play football/rounders or a sports game with friends
- Join a walking group/ Park run- this will allow you to meet new people and keep you healthy and fit
- Sports Complex-join a sport club
- Attend the gym
- Special Olympics
- Attend exercise classes
- Hire out facilities .e.g. football pitch, tennis court etc
- Coffee Shop – meet a friend for coffee/tea and buns
- Activity Centre .e.g. mini golf, trampoline park, bowling, ice skating – meet up with friends and do an activity that you all enjoy and find fun.
- Community hall – check out your local community hall and see what activities they might have on for example, chess club, exercise classes, art and crafts clubs, Youth Clubs, events.
- Further Education: Your local college may offer part time or evening classes. A lot of these classes are to develop a hobby or interest rather than for academic study although you can improve your literacy and maths skills as well. Examples include cookery classes, local history, learning a new language, photography or ICT.
Joining Groups and Volunteering
Joining local clubs you have an interest in or would like to learn something new are a great way to make new friends.
Example of Clubs: Sports clubs, social clubs, youth clubs, arts and craft clubs.
You will find a list of local clubs in sports complex’s, community notice boards, online and local newspapers.
Volunteering and attending Community Events
Getting involved in community events and volunteering is a great way to meet new people and give something back to the community. To find out more about volunteering and events in your community you can check your local newspaper, online and community notice boards.
To become a volunteer you need to think about what type of volunteering you are interested in. Volunteering can be broadly grouped into the following:
- Helping/ supporting people e.g. working with elderly people, volunteering at a school, nursery or hospital or helping people with disabilities.
- Volunteering with Animals e.g. Assisi or another rescue centre
- Working in a charity shop or fundraise e.g. Oxfam, Action Cancer, Hospice
- Environmental volunteering: This can involve working with a charity that focuses on improving the environment e.g. Conservation volunteers, Beach clean up projects, World Wildlife Fund etc.
You will also need to think about how often you can commit to volunteering and when you can volunteer e.g. during the week, at the weekend or evenings.
There are many benefits to becoming a volunteer in your local community including:
- Making new friends
- Learning new skills
- Feeling good about yourself
- Receive a reference when applying for a job.
To become a volunteer you will need to contact the charity you would like to support and find out how to apply to volunteer. If you are being supported by an agency they can usually help you to arrange this. You will usually need to fill in an application formm and in some cases have a police check, the charity will arrange this for you and it’s usually free.