Helping Hands & Befriending Projects

Helping Hands

Launched in 2011, Helping Hands is a Minor Repairs and Odd Jobs Service for Older People and People with disabilities living in Co. Monaghan.The service uses a pool of Garda vetted  volunteers to carry out necessary small repairs and improvements to the homes of Helping Hands clients, enabling them to live independently in the community in increased comfort and safety. The work is co-ordinated from the MID Castleblayney office and delivered free of charge. To be eligible for the service clients need to be over 65 years of age or have a disability, have no family members who could carry out the work on their behalf, not be in a position to engage a paid professional to do the work.

What work can be done by the project?
  • Minor gardening (e.g. mowing lawns)
  • Minor home decorating
  • Installing handrails
  • Tacking down carpets
  • Changing plugs, fuses and light bulbs
  • Installing security locks and chains
  • Hanging curtains
  • Installing domestic smoke alarms etc
To Avail of the Service
Simply call the Helping Hands phone number 042 9749500 or 087 0656793 and give the details of the job to be completed to the Helping Hands staff. The staff member will then arrange for two Helping Hands volunteers to assess and complete the task. Where a job is not suited to Helping Hands, the volunteers will inform the Helping Hands staff who will offer alternative solutions if possible.
Volunteers Needed
  • Do you have DIY skills and some spare time on your hands?
  • Can you do small jobs around the house?
  • Can you do minor domestic repairs?
  • Can you lend a Helping Hand?
We are constantly seeking volunteers of all ages, both male and female, who are interested and have the skills to do the work outlined above. Volunteers with specialist skills (e.g. joinery) are also welcome. We are particularly interested in attracting retired persons as volunteers.  All volunteers will be vetted and carry official Helping Hands Identity Cards.
For more information about the Helping Hands Programme, please contact the 
Helping Hands Coordinator on 042 9749500 / 087 0656793 or email: 
Befriending Monaghan
Befriending Monaghan is a service for older people in Co. Monaghan who are living with social isolation or loneliness. Our volunteers offer regular weekly social contact to people in the comfort of their own homes. Referrals can be made by family, neighbours, social services, health agencies or self-referral.
Each befriending relationship is different – we will try to make sure that each service user has a befriender with whom they have a shared interest. They will provide friendly conversation and companionship on a regular basis over a long period of time. All volunteers with Befriending Monaghan are Garda vetted and reference checked, for the protection of our service users.
 Befriending Monaghan hands
Similar services have been running around Ireland for many years but it is new in Co. Monaghan so you probably have some questions:  
Who is the service for?
Anyone living in Co. Monaghan who is over the age of 60 and would benefit from some company. In 2018 it is available for people living in the Monaghan Town area only, but we hope to expand in 2019. 
Who runs Befriending Monaghan?
Befriending Monaghan is run by Monaghan Integrated Development CLG  (MID), the local development company for Co. Monaghan. You can find out more about MID at 
How does befriending work?
Befriending is a regular, one-to-one service where a volunteer visits an older person in their own home, usually once a week. 
What does the volunteer do?
The volunteer can provide you with company, enjoy a cup of tea and a chat or maybe play a card game or watch a TV show with you. We will try to find someone with similar interests to you, whether it is sports or soaps! 
Can the volunteer help me with housework or with personal care issues?
No, the volunteer is not a home help or a carer and will not be in a position to undertake such roles.  If you need further support, you should contact your Public Health Nurse (047 30477) or your GP’s clinic. 
Do I have to pay for this service?
No, Befriending Monaghan is a free service. 
How often will my befriender visit?
Once a week, for about one hour. 
I would like a befriender, what happens next?
If you would like a volunteer befriender to visit you, contact Befriending Monaghan coordinator Marina McKenna on 087 0656793. Marina works Monday and Tuesday 9 to 5 and Wednesday 9 to 1. Outside of these hours you can leave a message on her phone or with Margaret at 042 9749500. (dial 1 and ask for Margaret).  Marina will arrange to visit you.  After the visit you will be matched with a suitable befriender.  This can take up to 3 months. On the first meeting, the co-ordinator will visit you with your new befriender and introduce you to each other, where you can discuss details of visits etc.
What should I do if I have a problem?
The befriending co-ordinator will liaise with the befriender to make sure everything is going well. However, if there is something you need to discuss or are not happy about you can contact the co-ordinator and she will do her best to get things sorted. 
How do I contact Befriending Monaghan?
If you or anyone you know would like to use Befriending Monaghan or just find out more, please call 087 0656793 or 042 9749500 (press 0 and ask for Margaret) or email