VOLUNTEERS are needed to make a difference to the lives of vulnerable and isolated people.

Recruits are needed in the Durham City and Chester-le-Street area for the Community Peer Mentor scheme, which supports people suffering from anti-social behaviour or neighbourhood disputes.

The project also aims to help reduce the pressure on services such as the council, emergency services, hospitals and GP surgeries by engaging with individuals who make frequent calls on the services.

The service is expanding across more towns and villages throughout County Durham and free training will take place in August,.

Durham Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner Ron Hogg said: “This project is expanding rapidly which is fantastic news for the people of County Durham and Darlington.

“We already have nearly 80 volunteers who are now trained as mentors.

“This is unique opportunity is available for people from all walks of life, to learn new skills and be part of a great team, whilst making a real difference to those who feel vulnerable and isolated in our communities.”

Once trained, mentors work with individuals to find the reasons behind their behaviour and encourage them to find ways to get the help and support they need.

Training sessions will take place on August 16 and 17, from 9.30am to 4pm each day, at the Army Reserve Centre, in Gilesgate, Durham.

For further information, please contact Jim Cunningham, Liz O’Hern or Susan Abson on 01325 405565 or email jim.cunningham@restorativehub.org.uk.