Hope you can help. We’re working on a new volunteering programme for early intervention services and we’re seeking examples of volunteers working in social work settings, on child protection issues, or mentoring/supporting families and young people at risk or in parent support. We’re seeking to develop a training programme to prepare volunteers to assist paid workers within early intervention services and seeking models out there that currently successfully engage volunteers.
I wondered whether any colleagues have already done this kind of thing and whether you might be able to point me to some successful models where this is working already.
Thanks very much for your help.
Hi there, Family Lives are working on 2 projects that see volunteers work with families as befrienders. They are early intervention in the sense that they try and stop issues escalating and will work with any families with a child under 18. It is very early days but we have just finished setting up all our processes for this.
As part of one of the projects we are also writing resources and training for family support services (including children’s centres) that work with volunteers. These will be out in the new year. Details of one of the projects are here – http://www.familylives.org.uk/how-we-can-help/for-professionals/ There is also a newsletter you can sign up to. Although neither project is working in your area, I would be happy to have a chat about the issues we had setting up the project and give more info about the resources.
The work we have done has found that there is lots of great volunteering happening in family support work but in a quite ad-hoc manner. Another organisation you could contact are Home Start who do befriending for families with children under 5.