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1 November 2018

Radio Forth befriending scheme continues to tackle loneliness across Scotland

  • Take the Time’ in collaboration with The Befriending Networks has had over 1200 volunteers sign up to become befrienders
  • Scheme celebrates successes to mark beginning of Befriending Week
  • Representatives from ‘Take the Time’ to attend Holyrood to celebrate success of the campaign

Radio Forth are today (1st November 2018) revisiting their ‘Take The Time’ campaign to celebrate the beginning of Befriending Week as they continue their extensive work to combat loneliness across Scotland, with the scheme being commended by Scottish Parliament at Holyrood next week. 

‘Take the Time’, in association with The Befriending Networks, has garnered support from over 1200 people across Scotland who have signed up to become a befriender and the charity have hired another employee to deal with demand generated by the project.

Since inception in February 2018, ‘Take the Time’ has investigated the issue of loneliness across Scotland, uncovering a multitude of stories on the topic, from the young and old, who live an isolated life. Showcasing their experiences on air Radio Forth in association with The Befriending Networks have highlighted to listeners the extent of the problem across the country calling for volunteers to be a part of the solution by signing up to become a befriender.

‘Take the Time’ has brought people together across Scotland to combat loneliness, including John Dickson (79) and Shelley O’Reilly (35) from Edinburgh. Shelly was alerted to the campaign through listening to Radio Forth and was paired with widower John through the charity Cyrenians in June.

John Dickson, beneficiary of Take the Time, on their pairing: “It is something to look forward to, it’s just good to have company. I never realised how many people are on their own until my wife died. As soon as we got together we felt quite comfortable. We never stop talking, I probably talk too much!”

Shelley O’Reilly, John’s befriender added: “We clicked right away, we got really well. It was a perfect match for us. We meet up once or twice a week, we chat, we go for dinner or meet up for a coffee. We’ve also been on a nice drive to Peebles, that was fun. We chat about everything, from politics to Love Island!”

More information about ‘Take the Time’ and how to get involved can be found at:




For Further information:

Cat Martin

Communications Director, Bauer Media 
T: 0207 432 3317 M: 07932 746363


Sian Collins

Communications Executive, Bauer Media 
M: 07718 124791 

Notes to Editors

Bauer Media UK reaches over 25 million UK consumers through a portfolio of world-class, multi-platform media and entertainment brands including heat, KISS, Grazia, Empire, Magic, Absolute Radio and the Hits Radio Network. These brands offer commercial partners access to highly engaged audiences, with creative solutions underpinned by insight and instinct. Bauer Media UK is part of the Bauer Media Group, one of the world’s largest privately owned media businesses with media assets all over the globe.

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