Volunteer Plus has been a huge contributor to our work in the community since 2013 and continues to provide opportunities, practical training to local people as well as increasing employability. – Rachel Cullen – Project Manager
We set up the Volunteer Plus project to tackle the needs of the local community with a view to improving employment opportunities for local people who are out of work, by increasing their skills, confidence, employability, and personal development whilst also developing volunteering opportunities at The Centre at Threeways. The project was set up to put some structure to our existing volunteering activities, whilst also being able to deliver some guided learning to volunteers as part of their experience.
Our aim is to have a positive impact on the future development and career potential of those volunteers by teaching them new skills – not only practical skills such as plastering and tiling, but those which will assist in their own development such as leadership, team-working, time-keeping, enhancing their CVs, interview practice and techniques, and 1:1 coaching.
We have involved a number of key partners, such as the Job Centre Plus and Halifax Opportunities Trust, we have also involved the local community. There is an option to self-refer onto the programme, and many of those who have taken part and completed the programme have been from the local community.
Our project impacts positively on the volunteers in a number of ways: It familiarises them with a ëworkingí routine ñ gives them a daily goal, a reason to get up at a regular time, and familiarises them with working in a team. It teaches them new skills ñ both practical, and personal. This provides both increased employability with relation to job opportunities, and it gives volunteers the ability to talk about what they have learned and how they have contributed to our project here at Threeways at interviews. The vast majority of volunteers feel an increase in confidence in a number of ways by the end of the programme, and feel more able to gain employment.