• Claudia Wace

When Mr Archer calls, you get ready to chat!

All of our volunteer artists are really important to our community. Each person plays a vital role in reducing isolation and creating meaningful conversation with older people.

Each older person is personally matched with volunteers from all sorts of arts trades. We’ve got singers, actors, writers and lots more talents on our books, all enjoying virtual friendships with their elderly companions.

Tim Bentinck

When actor, Tim Bentinck got in touch to become a Connectforce Companion then, we jumped at the chance to get him onboard. Tim is an English actor and writer. He is most well-known for his long-running role as David Archer in the BBC Radio 4 series, The Archers.

We caught up with him to find out why he got involved in our Connectforce Companions programme. Here's what he had to say...

Hi Tim! It’s so good to have you as one of our valued volunteers.

Tell us, why did you sign up to be a Connectforce Companion?

My older sister, who is 79, is doing it and put me to shame! Also I'm aware of the loneliness that can be a part of old age, and with time on my hands at the moment, felt it would be a good thing to do.

How have you found your experience so far?

Really lovely. Paula, my Companion is great fun, very chatty with a fund of stories. She's told me she's really looked forward to our weekly half hour. As have I.

How do you feel being a creative benefits your experience?

Probably not that much, although I'm very used to talking to strangers. It helps that she doesn't listen to The Archers, so she doesn't talk to me as though I'm 'David', but as 'Tim'!

...and here's the lovely Paula!

How is your connection developing?

Well, I think. We've got to know each other and both take an interest in each others' lives.

What kind of things have you spoken about?

We've steered clear of politics and religion, like any good dinner party. Apart from that the conversations have been very wide ranging, but mostly about work and family.

Would you recommend the Companions scheme to friends and colleagues?

I certainly would, it's a great thing to be involved with, and rewarding for both parties.

We’re always on the lookout for more performers. If you're an artist who has 20 minutes for a weekly call, become one of our volunteers.


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