Children and Young People Volunteer (Kingston upon Thames)
Have you got what it takes to support children & young people aged 4-17 who have been affected by or have been witnesses of crime?
We are looking for volunteers aged 13 and over to support children and young people face-to-face often through home visits, telephone support as well as to work with their families and other agencies to increase confidence and reduce the risk of them being a victim of crime in the future.
What will I be doing?
- Contacting and meeting children and young people face to face either individually or if required in groups, at their homes or at another mutually agreed location, and providing them with on-going support, guidance and information.
- Helping to run workshops and discussion groups in schools, raising awareness of how crime impacts on children and the work of Victim Support.
- Helping children and young people to explore how their experience of crime has affected their lives, increasing confidence, building resilience and reducing the risk of them becoming a victim of crime again.
- Clearly explaining the role of Victim Support’s Children and Young People Service, what we can and cannot offer and communicating in a way that is appropriate to the person being supported.
- Working to identify their individual needs and helping them to choose options they feel are right for them.
- Promoting and advocating for their rights and needs with other agencies, respecting their diversity and ensuring that the service is accessible for each individual.
- Explaining the victim’s code of practice so children and young people are aware of the support that they are entitled through criminal justice organisations.
- Identifying situations where Victim Support cannot directly meet the needs of children and young people and liaising with them and your manager to signpost and make appropriate referrals to other organisations.
- Liaising with your manager, Children & Young Person’s caseworker or other staff to arrange practical help for children and young people.
What skills do I need?
- Flexibility around volunteering in different settings and locations, including schools, youth clubs and play services.
- Ability to explore your own values and beliefs relating to victims of hate crime and gang-related activity, your motivation for doing this work and the qualities you bring to the role.
- Excellent verbal communication skills and ability to listen empathetically.
- A non-judgemental, impartial and confidential approach to supporting others; able to work effectively within the boundaries of the role.
- Ability to build rapport quickly with children and young people, using creative communication methods dependent on the children’s needs.
- Ability to reflect on any difficulties this work may bring up for you personally and the impact of listening to clients’ stories, including exploring difficult and uncomfortable topics.
- Able to build trust and respect confidentiality within the boundaries of the role.
- A commitment to ensuring victims have equal access to our services, and respect for the diversity of Victim Support’s staff, volunteers and clients.
- Willing to work within all Victim Support’s values, procedures and policies.
- Ability to identify and respond appropriately to factors which would initiate a response in line with Child or Adult Safeguarding policy.
- Basic IT skills and willingness to access Victim Support web pages, internet and emails.
- Reliable, open-minded, approachable and able to work as part of a team.
How much time am I expected to give?
- We’re looking for volunteers who can typically support young victims for at least 3 hours a week. Ideally you would be able to provide on-going support to the same victim throughout the whole process, which could last up to 6 months.
- Supporting young victims at schools will take place during school hours or outside of them. Supporting them at other mutually agreed locations may be carried out at times convenient to you and to the individual. This may include some evenings (up to 7.30pm).
- The role will involve travelling to a local office for regular one-to-ones with your manager and to visit clients. You may be asked to travel to support young victims in other London boroughs, whilst every effort will be made to minimise travel. You will likely need to use public transport or your own vehicle. All reasonable out of pocket expenses will be reimbursed, including travel expenses, in line with Victim Support’s Expense Policy.
What does the training involve?
- All volunteers will be required to take part in relevant modules of the core Multi crime training so that they have a strong understanding of the work and values of the organisation they promote. This is a four day face-to-face course that is mandatory (sometimes offered on weekends).
- Volunteers who do not have experience in working with children & young people will be required to attend the Young Victims training. This is a three day face-to-face course that is mandatory. However, if you have experience in this field you may not be required to complete the young victims training.
- All volunteers will receive the Victim Support data protection, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and Victim’s code of practice training. This is through an e-learning package.
- Commitment to attending group meetings, one-to-one support sessions, refresher training and development sessions.
What are the benefits?
- Full induction, one-to-one support for the role, and opportunities for excellent training and to develop new transferrable skills.
- All volunteers have free access to the Employee Access Programme which provides free, confidential assistance with any work, personal or family issue.
- Rewarding sense of having made a positive difference to people’s lives.
- Learn about the work of criminal justice agencies.
- All volunteers have free access to a wide range of e-learning opportunities.
- Payment of agreed expenses, e.g. travel.
What opportunities do I get?
- Join a team of like-minded people.
- Contribute to our valuable work.
- Opportunities to join in project teams and influence development throughout the organisation.
How do I apply?
- Internal candidates should talk to their line manager or a young people’s worker if you would like to find out more about this role
- OR for more details external candidates can contact Rema Begum- Senior Service Delivery manager, at Roxana-Elena.Preotescu@victimsupport.org.uk
This opportunity is available to all applicants aged 13 and over (please note roles may vary according to age).In addition to this for young people under the age of 18 we have other volunteering opportunities such as our National Youth Forum and Peer Education Programmes: contact email@example.com for more information.
If you have comparable experience providing face-to-face support gained at another organisation, this may enable you to progress more quickly to supporting young victims post-accreditation. We will help you to develop personally and professionally in return for your commitment.
This role requires references and internal safeguarding checks. Volunteers will be asked to provide all relevant documents for VS to carry out these checks.
All volunteers must have an active email address that they use regularly and be willing to engage in our electronic means of communication, keeping up-to-date with information on our intranet, maintaining personal details on our database, and engaging in two-way communication.