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INtegr8 is the Youth Action Project’s Befriending Service for 10 – 21 year olds. We aim to reach some of West Lothian’s most vulnerable young people, specifically those who are isolated and experiencing issues around their mental health/well-being. Young people may have things going on in their lives such as peer or family difficulties, being bullied, feeling alone, or experiencing stress or anxiety. Our objectives for young people are:


  • To reduce social isolation

  • To increase levels of confidence & self-esteem

  • To engage young people in sustainable community activities

  • To improve communication skills

  • To help young people cope better emotionally


What is Befriending?

Befriending is support offered to young people on a one to one basis. It is carried out by trained and vetted volunteers who meet with their young people approximately once a week for 2 – 3 hours, during which time they take part in social & recreational activities together. Young people can discuss any aspect of their lives with their befriender if they want to. INtegr8 offers a confidential service.


Referral Criteria:

  • Young person aged 10 – 21

  • Living in West Lothian

  • Experiencing issues affecting mental health/well-being

  • Isolated/not involved in any social or recreational activities


Due to high demand on our service, and delivery dependent upon availability of trained volunteers and capacity to support them, the Befriending Service is unable to accept and progress referrals on a responsive basis. A waiting list is in operation, which is usually very long. Befrienders normally support 1 young person at a time for a period of around 1 year. At capacity, the befriending team consists of 20 - 22 volunteers.


Befriending Service Statistics – April 2017 to March 2018


·         21 enquiries logged into the waiting system

·         14 enquiries from members of the public looking for a volunteering opportunity

·         2 volunteers participated in and completed Befriender Induction Training

·         27 young people received 1-1 Befriender support

·         18 trained and vetted community volunteers delivered Befriender support to young people

·         The service can support up to 22 active matches at any given time (when securely funded)

·         Occasionally, volunteers will support more than 1 young person in their role


To enquire, please contact:

Angie Gourdie,

INtegr8 Co-ordinator 01506 431430



“Thank you for giving me the information for the young person I referred.  It sounds like he really benefitted from the Befriending Service.  Your service is an absolute stalwart for young people’s mental health and well-being. The fact you extended it a bit due to his circumstances just confirms that the young person is at the heart of all your support.” -

Xanthe Dalziel-Carruthers - West Lothian Young Carers (referrer)



" My experience has been really positive. I am really glad to be involved with the service and hope that it gives value to those it serves"   - Volunteer Befriender




" The people we have referred always talk positively about their experiences. They are always happy with their match and enjoy getting out and about and doing things they wouldn't be able to do without this opportunity" - Referrer


Youth Action staff members are in the office and available most weekdays.


09:00 AM - 06:00 PM



Maree Walk,
Livingston, EH54 5BP


Charity No. SC026347


01506 431430



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