VOLUNTEER COLUMN: Trying to get back into work?

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If you’re currently not working, volunteering can be a great way of using your time.

You can meet new people, gain new skills and experiences, and have fun.

And what’s more, it may even help you to find paid employment.

We have heard recently from someone who came along to one of our Introduction to Volunteering Workshops that the volunteering roles he found through us have helped him to get a job which he loves.

He said: “I know that being able to add them [the volunteer roles] to my CV and show that I was currently using the skills that would be needed in my new job were important factors in becoming the successful applicant.”

Appropriate adult – West Sussex Youth Offending Service

The appropriate adult service aims to safeguard the rights and welfare of 10 to 17-year-olds while they are held in police custody.

When a young person is arrested, the police cannot proceed without the presence of a parent, carer or other appropriate adult.

Where the parent is unable to attend the police station the young person can often be left waiting in the cells for a long time for another adult to be found.

The service meets this need by training volunteers willing to help vulnerable young people, so reducing the amount of time they are held in custody.

You must be over 21 for this role.

Office administrator – Crossroads Care South Central

There are six million carers in Britain who care for others.

Many reach a turning point, a crossroads, at which they feel they need help with caring, a sympathetic ear or some time to themselves.

This is what Crossroads does.

They are looking for a volunteer to input data from report forms and survey responses onto their system.

This is something that can be done in a couple of hours once or twice a week, but they would consider other options.

They need someone who has at least a basic knowledge of computers and who would be comfortable with inputting data.

Group leader/organiser – Arun Counselling Centre

Arun Counselling Centre are looking for volunteers to work with a group of older people who meet weekly on a Thursday from 2.30pm to 4.30pm to talk and make new friendships.

The group is small at the moment, about nine people, and they have tea and biscuits and also a cream tea once a month.

The volunteer would make the tea and clear up after.

They would also be required to join in the conversation and make sure that everyone gets a chance to speak, in other words to help to make the experience as pleasant as possible.

The volunteers would be responsible for setting up the group room, no heavy lifting involved, and on occasions other volunteers will visit.

Assistant private rented sector access worker – Worthing Churches Homeless Projects

Worthing Churches Homeless Projects provides a range of services for adults who are homeless and insecurely housed.

This is a fantastic opportunity for the right person to develop their knowledge of the private rented sector, current homelessness issues and to gain administration skills.

No previous experience is necessary, although the role will ideally suit somebody looking to go into housing charity work or further their housing knowledge and experience.

The applicant needs to be willing to learn, non-judgemental and be able to work in a sensitive and confidential manner.

• For more information on any of the above roles, please call Volunteer Now! on 01243 864220, or visit www.do-it.org. For bite-sized volunteering of ten days or less please visit skillshare-westsussex.org.uk

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