Community Grant for Befriended Balance

We’re in the customer vote for a Tesco Community Grant. It’s a scheme which gives community projects like us grants of up to £1,500. Tesco customers will now vote in Burgess Hill and Haywards Heath stores during October and November to decide how much funding we get, so please support us next time you shop at Tesco!

Befriended balance is a fun, engaging exercise class suitable for everyone. We regularly host a class in Hurstpierpoint and we look forward to expanding across Mid Sussex soon.

To vote, you will need to make a purchase within store of any value. You will receive one token per transaction and it’s not necessary to purchase a carrier bag in order to receive a token. Click here to read more about the wonderful scheme!

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

On 8th of September we all heard the very sad news of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.   Our Sovereign Queen and Defender of the Faith had died after a lifetime of service to God and her Country.  We give thanks to God for her life and continue to pray for her family.

We are very aware that many of you will have very fond and numerous memories of the Queen throughout her long reign.  We hope and trust that you will treasure them for many months and years to come.  Our country as well as us as individuals have been in mourning along with her family and we all witnessed an awesome fitting funeral for a unique and incredible woman on Monday 19th of September.

“Grief is the price we pay for love.” 

Since the death of the Queen, there has been an outpouring of communal grief that may resonate for some, more than others. The feelings you might be experiencing may feel invalid or strange if you had never met the Queen, however, it is totally normal to have an emotional response when something of this magnitude happens. The Queen was part of Britain’s everyday life and many people will have only ever experienced the Queen as their sovereign, some will feel as though they have lost a family member with her death.   This may also be a trigger for some who are reminded of what it was like to lose so many people in recent years.  The death of anyone can bring up old, or recent, hurts and emotions from your own experience of death and grief, and it is ok to allow this news to open up those feelings and conversations.

We have seen and still have a huge amount of news coverage and this can be overwhelming.  It is good to give yourself a break from the television or radio and take a break from social media. Allow yourself to grieve and experience all the emotions that come with that. Talk to a trusted friend or adult or seek professional support via Befriended and know that it’s safe to share your grief.

A Year of Change at Befriended

Over the last year, many things have changed in Befriended, in every area, we have new team, new trustees, new services and many many new clients and volunteers.

We have just sent out a newsletter to everyone on our mailing list (if you are on our mailing list and didn’t get it, check your junk and then add to your ‘Safe list’), if you’re not on our mailing list and would like to be, please contact us and we will make sure that you receive all our future newsletters and updates. Either way, if you haven’t already read our update, you can do so by clicking on the button below.

A return to in-person Befriending

As national restrictions are lifting, the trustees have been in discussions and have agreed a simple but safe way forward. 

If you would like to go back to either visiting your befriendee or you would like to see your befriender please get in contact with us as we would love to enable this to happen both safely and sensitively.   One of the team will call or visit to make sure both parties are happy.   

Did you know that in the UK?

  • 1 in 3 older people are affected by loneliness;
  • 1 in 10 of the entire older population say they often feel lonely;
  • Half of all older people in the UK consider TV to be their main form of company;
  • Over half a million older people leave their house once a week or less;
  • Nearly half of all people aged 75 and over live alone;
  • A saddening 450,000 older people in the UK spent last Christmas alone;
  • 60 older people a week die alone;
  • As the UK population is living longer, the number of people aged 80 years and older is projected to almost double by 2030;
  • The overall increase of older people reporting loneliness by 2030 will be around 40%?


  • Being lonely has a significant and lasting effect on blood pressure; lonely individuals have higher blood pressure than their less lonely peers;
  • Loneliness is as big a risk to health as smoking and obesity;
  • Loneliness is associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease;
  • 1 in 10 older people visit their GP because they are lonely.


  • Being older is a crucial predictor of loneliness and that by 2030 demographic change alone is projected to drive up the number of lonely older people in the UK by 40%;
  • There is a strong link between having low levels of income and being lonely – older people in poverty suffer lower frequency of social contacts;
  • 16% of us say we would like to offer to do something to help an older person, but are too afraid to do so;
  • 15% of us say we would like to do something kind for an older person, but can’t find the time.