Volunteer Carers Mentoring Project
Wirral Connect (Formerly Wirral CVS) was successfully awarded a four year Lottery Grant at the end of 2015. This is to recruit volunteers who would like to become qualified Volunteer Carer Mentors, to work directly with Carers and Former Carers to reduce the stress and isolation felt due to their caring role, past or present.
By speaking to Carers and Former Carers and through research conducted we know that Carers and Former Carers struggle to find the appropriate help and support at the time when it is actually needed.
Our Carer Mentoring Project hopes to provide exactly this form of individualised help and support. This we feel we can achieve by working with partner organisations to identify those who are struggling and for us then to work positively with those who need the help and support.
Our three main areas of focus
1. Recruiting and training volunteers to achieve an accredited Level 2 Award in Peer Mentoring.
2. For qualified Mentors to become Volunteer Mentors, working with Carers and Former Carers.
3. To work with Carers or Former Carers who are struggling to find the appropriate help and support at the time when needed.
The Carers / Former Carers will be matched with one of our qualified Carer Mentors. The Mentors will work with the Carers / Former Carers to help them overcome any barriers they are experiencing.
The Mentors will take the time to listen to the Carers / Former Carers and build a safe and supportive environment. With the support of the mentor, the Carers / Former Carers will set their own goals and together and will work towards achieving them.
So what is Mentoring?
Mentoring is a one to one, non judgemental relationship in which an individual voluntarily gives their time to support and encourage another.
(Active Community Unit, Home Office)
It is usually time limited, working towards agreed specific goals. A mentor is a listening ear, creating a climate of trust and building a safe and supportive environment. The Mentor will support the Carer / Former Carer in setting their own agenda (goals) while maintaining appropriate boundaries and working towards achieving them.
Volunteering at Carer Connections
Taking the time and wanting to become a volunteer is a huge commitment. The positive, and in some cases, the life changing impact that you will have on people is reward in itself.
At difficult points in our lives, we all need a little help and direction and by connecting people, our volunteers will help those that need that support.
How will it benefit me?
- become part of a dedicated and passionate team
- meet and make new friends and colleagues
- gain confidence
- improve your own health and wellbeing
- gain new skills and experience
- grow and develop personally
- help your local community.
How much time is required?
There is a level of commitment required with this role, we do however appreciate that you are giving your time freely. Karen Giner, the Project Coordinator, will discuss this with you prior to you being matched with a Carer or a Former Carer.
What we ask of you in becoming a Volunteer Mentor
We will need you to do the following:
- be realistic and honest about the time you are able to dedicate
- draw on the knowledge gained during your training, remembering where your boundaries lie
- ask for support and help when needed
- maintain a non confrontational and non judgemental approach at all times
- adhere to our Policies and Procedures, particularly upholding the need for confidentiality at all times.
What you can expect from us
The Carer Connections team will do the following:
- provide you with regular one to one direct support
- listen to your opinions about your volunteering experience and review any changes you may suggest
- provide any further training necessary to maintain standards and keep you up to date with Wirral Connect Policies and Procedures
- reimburse you with any agreed Volunteer expenses (i.e. travel expenses) in accordance with the Volunteer Expenses Policy.
Volunteer Mentoring Induction
Following completion of the Peer Mentoring training, and as part of your commitment to becoming a Volunteer Mentor, each Volunteer will need to attend the Mentoring Induction training. The aim of this is to familiarise yourself with the role, the team and the relevant Policies and Procedures.
Disclosure Barring Service
As part of your mentoring role and prior to being matched with a Carer or Former Carer, you will need to apply for a DBS which will be funded through Carer Connections. We will explain and support all Volunteers regarding this.
Volunteering with us
All our Volunteers are important to us and we will be here to support them just as much as those they will be working with. If this interests you or that you have any questions, concerns or queries regarding this, please contact us on 0151 647 5432 or click below to download a referral form.