At a glance


  • Mental health

Other details

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Tandem is a small charity that sets up one-to-one befriending partnerships between people living with mental health problems, and volunteer befrienders.

Many people who experience some form of mental distress such as depression, anxiety or other mental health conditions find that their social networks are lost. It can be hard to go out, and they become lonely and isolated. 

Tandem provides support for people on their journey towards recovery. At a time when approximately 1 in 4 people in the UK experiences a mental health problem each year, we are making a real difference to people’s lives.

Here is what some of those with whom we work have said about Tandem:

“My befriender is very responsive when I simply need to talk through my feelings and does her best to offer positive and constructive advice and reassurance. Thank you Tandem for bringing us together.”

“Befriending makes me see things in a different way and gives me a different perspective on things and a greater understanding of what life can be like for other people.”

“I have a lot to deal with, so many health issues. To do that alone is impossible, so (befriending) has given me my life.”


Tandem recruits and trains volunteers, and sets up one-to-one partnerships between them and someone who is suffering from mental ill health and is lonely or isolated.

These partnerships continue for at least a year with the befrienders meeting their partners once a week to share activities outside the home. Befrienders provide a listening ear, and support their befriendees to take part in community activities and build their self-confidence.

Through befriending partnerships, people living with mental health problems are able to pick up the threads of their lives and continue with some of the activities that they enjoyed before their illness.

Tandem also runs a weekly Social Group which provides opportunities for wider social contacts through shared outings and activities.

Current opportunities

Oxfordshire, OX4 1YH

Tandem sets up befriending partnerships in and around Oxford between trained befriender volunteers and people struggling to regain confidence and...