VOLUNTEER ADVISOR TRAINING PART 2 & THE BIG DIG DAY!

As part of my ongoing journey, I attended part 2 of a beneficial course yesterday, Tuesday 25th March 2014, our trainer, the fabulous Jenni Parker jenniparkervolunteering.com . It  was even better this week, in addition we had a new volunteer, newest member to the team who myself and my Manager Sam recruited on Saturday 22nd March at the Big Dig Day supporting the charity Sustainable Merton. Saturday was a really good day, spoke to some interesting people, some inspiring n the kids were flocking around me which was soooo nice! Using what we picked on the day, a resident (our new volunteer Jerslin)  and her brother made a very lush veggie soup (on the jerk pan) and a veggie curry with fried dumpling (mouthwatering)!

Anyway back to training day, Safeguarding and communication were the key yesterday. You learn something new everyday:

  • The term volunteer was first recorded in 1755 from the noun ‘One who offers himself for military service’
  • N.C.V.O – National Council of Voluntary Organisations based in Kings Cross
  • The meaning of S.OL.E.R in terms of body language  when interviewing a volunteer in order to make them comfortable – Squarely, Open, Lean, Eye Contact and Relax. People rarely remember what you say however will remember how you made them feel
  • Trust Building Behaviors – Talk straight, Demonstrate respect, Right wrongs, Admit mistakes, Show loyalty, Clear expectations, Listen, Keep commitment – ”Under promise and over deliver”

A volunteer advisor must be able to motivate the individual or group however always must be mindful of the other person at all times, think about your body language, tone and questions asked…always think before you speak, listen to what they are saying then use reflective listening to respond.

As a whole, the team were asked about the word safeguarding and what we thought it meant. Our combined responses included Protection, Respecting others and Be mindful which were all elements of safeguarding. Jenni confirmed the correct meaning which we understood;

”Protect from harm or damage with an appropriate measure”

Types of abuse – Physical, Sexual, Psychological/mental, Financial, Neglect, Discrimination, and Institutional. We went through each one and discussed however did not spend too much time on this section of course as you can imagine. We were split into groups and worked on case studies, team building and communication role play which Jenni made fun! We learnt a lot and will be putting into play immediately, as a team it was a successful training course and we have got to know each other that little bit more, great characters, great personalities that make a great team who will make a difference! Go team!

I’m not nosey I just like to gather information.

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