Move Mates

What is Move Mates?

Our Move Mates project makes getting out for a walk a reality for people who might otherwise find barriers in their way. Our volunteers give people confidence to get out and go for a walk, improving their physical health, reducing isolation and ultimately making people feel happier!
We pair people with one of our trained, friendly, local volunteers to meet regularly for a walk. These regular walks boost people’s confidence as well as improving physical and mental health outcomes.
Move Mates support adults of all ages, in the York area by providing motivation, company and moral support so people are more active and less isolated.

Our wonderful volunteer Move Mates give people the confidence to get out of their houses and go for a walk – for any purpose – where they would usually struggle to do so on their own.
Move Mates volunteer and benefactor going for a walk.

I Want to Request
a Move Mate

You can self-refer to have a Move Mate or you can make a referral on behalf of someone else. If you are referring someone, you must have their express consent to share their details.

We are currently at capacity for Move Mates in York and are not accepting new referrals.

01904 373017

What Happens Next?

We’ll send out a welcome pack which includes information about the project, what to expect, how we use personal data and the commitment we expect from you. 

One of our team will get in touch to find out a bit more about you, check your eligibility and find out what you hope to get from having a Move Mate.

We’ll look for a suitable volunteer for you, based on your location, availability and preferences.


We’ll contact you to set the date and time for your first walk and we’ll check in afterwards to ask you how it went.

I Want to Volunteer
to Become a Move Mate

We are actively recruiting volunteers for our fantastic Move Mates project in York.

Are you compassionate, a good communicator and empathetic to people from all walks of life? This could be for you!

Can you give an hour or two a week to walk and talk with someone, and make a 3 month minimum commitment?

What Happens Next?

To complete the volunteer application process:

Complete our online form. You’ll be required to undergo an ID check for the Disclosure Barring Service and provide a character reference. 

We will contact you by email.You will be asked to undertake some online training and book a slot to chat with us about your availability and preferences.

We’ll pair you up with one of our beneficiaries and set the date and time for your first walk.

‘Had a bright but breezy walk up the hill – saw a squirrel and an entertaining cat pawing at a window. It was nice to be out and have a chat!’

Jayne – Move Mate Beneficiary

Why Would Someone Need a Move Mate?

People have all sorts of reasons for becoming inactive, housebound or losing confidence.

Social or general anxiety.

Lack of confidence.

Mental Health conditions.

Sensory impairments.

Loneliness and social isolation

Fear of falling

Whilst Move Mates is primarily a walking buddy service, we can also help people to get out running in certain circumstances. For example, someone with dementia who is fit enough and enjoys running, but is unable to go on their own.
Move Mates volunteer with elderly lady going for a walk

How Does it Work?

Move Mates Volunteer with benefactor having a walk in a park.

We pair up one of our Move Mates with someone for a one-off walk or for a regular, weekly walk. We ask people what they want to achieve through walking and review this with them after three months to decide together if further support is required.

The Move Mate meets the person at their front door and accompanies them for a walk. It could be a walk to the local shop or to pick up a prescription, or it could be a walk to an activity or event they want to attend. It could be as simple as walk around the block just to get moving, build confidence and have a chat.

Moves Mates lifts people in so many ways, primarily: Boosting mental wellbeing, improving physical health and decreasing loneliness.

‘We walked in the snow last week and walked in the wind and rain this morning. Got splashed by cars on the road, dodging branches from trees 😂. Ollie showing great determination in the face of the weather and still continuing to do his weekly walk. 💪’

Hannah – Move Mate

Why We Volunteer

Our volunteers tell us how great volunteering makes them feel and what a positive impact it has on their own lives, that’s before you even consider how wonderful it is to help others.

Start Your Move Mates Project

We are super chuffed that you want to help more people to get walking in your area, and we offer an affiliate scheme to provide you with the tools and support to get you started.
You can also register your interest as a potential volunteer or referrer in other areas.

Support Us

Support us to make a difference to more people.

A regular donation could be the difference between keeping our free services available, or not.

Even a one-off donation is a big deal for us, so please give if you can.
£ 5
  • Thank you! - £5 pays for three volunteer ID cards so our Move Mates can identify themselves to the people they walk with, helping people to feel safe and secure.
£ 10
  • Amazing! - £10 pays for one new volunteer to undergo the checks we need to ensure our Move Mates are the perfect match for the vulnerable people they support.
£ 15
  • That's brilliant! - £15 pays for eight Move Mate welcome packs to be sent out, providing important information to our beneficiaries right from the start.