Meet our friend(s) Dave

Tower Bridge neighbours Dave (77) and Dave (38) have been matched through our Love Your Neighbour Programme for just over 7 months. This week, they have shared with us a small snippet of their friendship.

Why did you sign up to the Love Your Neighbour programme?

Dave S: “I decided to join South London Cares as my wife and I were looking for a way to get more involved in our local community, and SLC was a perfect fit for us. At the induction I was told about the “Love your neighbour” program, and as I love making new friends and was feeling a real lack of human connection after Covid, I thought this was perfect!

Dave D: “It was put to me that I might join the “Love your neighbour program” by Emily at South London Cares, a charity who provide activities that bring together older and younger generations. What they do is pair you up with a ‘neighbour’ who visits you to talk with you. The neighbour is someone who lives in your catchment area.”

Tell us about your friendship match…

Pxl 20220218 122827644 1

Dave S: “I was matched with Dave, who lives just 7 minutes from me, and as it turns out, almost over the road from one of the gyms I use. When I was told about him, we seemed to have very similar ideas and shared at least a love of cats. (I’m veggie and he’s vegan, and we both have a black cat). Dave lives in Tower Bridge and has lived here for over 10 years. He has done so many jobs in his life, almost every time we meet I hear about something else he’s done.

“If I were to pick 3 words to describe Dave, they would be: Stubborn, Cheery and Comedic. Probably in that order ;)”

Dave D: “We both have the same first names and Dave is a fitness instructor, I am not however.”

At first I was wary, but decided to give it a whirl. That was a decision I have never regretted. We are a good match, both of us have an excellent sense of humour and our meetings are full of laughter. The love your neighbour program has proved to be a success.”

Dji Export 1657121488124

What sort of things have you enjoyed doing together?

Dave S: “We have a visit at least once a week, but if I’m travelling then I try and meet twice the week before. We normally meet at Dave’s flat, but recently we went for lunch at The Shard which was lovely! We both have very flexible days, so our meetings are at different times every week, depending on what works for us. What I enjoy most about our visits is hearing about the whole lifetime Dave has lived and what he’s seen and done.

Dave D: “I was trying to think of my favourite meet-up with Dave but every visit is good and I always enjoy his company.

Dave S: “My favourite visit with Dave I would say would be my third one. Nothing particularly memorable happened on this visit, but it was then when we both started to relax and be ourselves around the other. From then the genuine relationship started blossoming.

Pxl 20220624 1750180092

Would you recommend this programme to other people?

Dave S: “Volunteering on this program has made such a positive difference in my life because I have made a genuine long term friend. Over a time when people were very lonely, I’ve found someone who I get to spend time with every week.”

Dave D: “If you have the opportunity make friends with a neighbour I recommend you snap it up and share your life and interests with another human being.

Dave S: “I’d say to anyone thinking of joining the program that they should bite the bullet and come to the induction. See what it is all about. If you decide its not for you, that’s fine, but more than likely you’ll be inspired to get involved right away. I wish I’d joined sooner.

Pxl 20220624 183619556

Keep an eye out for Dave and Dave if you’re around Tower Bridge, or at our Walking Kickboxing club which Dave S leads or Technology workshops where Dave D is always more than happy to lend a hand to sort out your computer woes.

We’re looking for more younger neighbours in both Southwark and Lambeth. So if Dave and Dave have inspired you to get involved, then you can apply here, or contact us to find out more - we’re always up for a chat!

Emily Martin

Posted by Emily Martin on Friday 22nd July 2022

Emily leads on our Love Your Neighbour programme in Southwark, connecting younger and older neighbours for one-to-one friendship. South London is her treasured home since arriving from New Zealand. When she’s not enjoying shows at the Young Vic or Southwark Playhouse, you can find her seeking out music, creative events, cheap eats or even wandering the beaches of the Thames, spotting pieces of histories as the mud reveals them.