Volunteering opportunity

Children’s Helpline Volunteer - Drop the Pressure

Added by
 
Leading Lights Education and Wellbeing
on 21st July 2020
 

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Bristol neighbourhood
  • Ashton Vale / Bower Ashton
  • Avonmouth / Lawrence Weston
  • Barton Hill / Lawrence Hill / Newtown
  • Bedminster / Victoria Park
  • Bedminster Down / Headley Park / Uplands / Highridge
  • Bishopston / Horfield / Henleaze / Golden Hill
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  • Bristol City Centre
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  • Eastville / Rose Green / Clay Hill
  • Edge of Bristol (Bath & North East Somerset)
  • Edge of Bristol (North Somerset)
  • Edge of Bristol (South Gloucester)
  • Filton / Frenchay
  • Filwood Park / Inns Court / Lower Knowle / Novers Park
  • Fishponds / Hillfields / Chester Park / Lodge Hill
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  • Henbury / Brentry / Botany Bay / Charlton Mead
  • Hengrove / Whitchurch
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  • Lockleaze
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  • Southville / Ashton Gate
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  • St George / Crew's Hole / Troopers Hill
  • St Paul's / St Werburghs / St. Agnes / St Jude's
  • St Philip's Marsh / The Dings
  • Stapleton / Broomhill / Begbrook
  • Stockwood / Flowers Hill
  • Totterdown / Knowle / Windmill Hill
  • Westbury on Trym / Westbury Park / Sneyd Park / Stoke Bishop
  • Whiteway / Burchells Hill / Two Mile Hill
What matters to you
  • Business / social enterprise
  • Children / young people / family
  • Community / neighbourhood action
  • Covid-19 Support
  • Education / learning
  • Health / wellbeing
  • Inclusion / inequality / social justice
Frequency
  • Regular

Role overview

We have an exciting new opportunity for a Children’s Helpline volunteer to assist on our helplines supporting children and young people with mental health needs on our Drop the Pressure Project. If you have experience in counselling, youth work, social work, or mental health services working with children and young people, then this could be the ideal position for you if you have a few hours to spare to make a real difference!  We are a lovely and passionate crew and would love to have you come and volunteer for us on this vital service.  

This helpline service sits within our ‘Glow’ projects that was created to meet the demand for imaginative expert support for children and young people and their families who are impacted by mental health often correlated with special educational needs and disabilities. Originally, this service was designed as a in person drop in advocacy project. However, to support the increased pressure on children and families during Covid-19 and the subsequent cost to young people’s mental health, we have been running throughout lock down as a telephone and texting service offering emotional support and advice as well as advocacy, although we are now looking to also start to offer some opportunity for face to face meetings too when this needed by the child and young person. Due to the level of need we are experiencing, we are now looking to expand the service as we can’t keep up with the demand and so we can help even more young people. 

 

A bit about us

We work with children and young people at both primary and secondary school age who are disadvantaged because of social, emotional, and mental health (SEMH) difficulties. They often have a diagnosed mental health condition or are waiting for a diagnosis, and it is often correlated with a history of trauma or psychological distress, or another disability, learning need, or physical illness. Many of the children we work with are also affected by issues such as domestic violence, abuse, identity issues, bullying and many are young carers.

Whilst each child is affected differently, common issues that we see are: Problems accessing school either through non-attendance, or difficulty focusing and thriving at school, difficulties making friends leading to significant social isolation, issues with confidence and self-esteem which can lead to difficulties leaving the house or even their rooms for days at a time, panic attacks, suicidal attempts or ideation, self-harm, and difficulties accessing support and help from statutory services.

We want to make three key differences:

  1. Improved mental health.
  2. Reduced social isolation
  3. Increased ability to thrive at school.

 

Your volunteer responsibilities will include:

  • Answering and making calls and texts and offering advice, advocacy and emotional/practical support to service users.
  • Logging communications in the Children’s Helpline log.
  • Follow up support. This may involve escalating safeguarding concerns to the safeguarding officer or contacting external organisations, local and national authorities or schools for advocacy needs. We like to make stuff happen for our young people in the best possible ways
  • Attending supervision and training.
  • Proactive follow up with young people which subject to what happens with Covid-19 might also include face to face meetings and other follow up but this can be discussed and volunteer feelings will be taken into account as well as risk assessment. 

 

Ideally you will have:

  • A genuine passion for helping children and young people.
  • Emotional resilience.
  • Be imaginative and proactive about problem solving. 
  • Good communication skills.
  • Patient, empathetic, and calm phone manner.
  • A willingness to give and receive feedback.
  • Knowledge of confidentiality and safeguarding process.
  • A belief in and commitment to our values.
  • Ability to use initiative and be able to work without supervision.
  • Ability to commit to at least 6 months with us. 
  • We want our volunteers to get the most out of their experience with us both personally and professionally. Let us know what you are after and we’ll see if we can support you.

 

Role details

We require 1 shift per week (4hrs). This time includes working on the telephone helpline and any follow-up care or appropriate escalation to the team. The Children’s Helpline takes place weekly on Thursdays 2-4pm. The successful applicant must be able to regularly commit to these hours. However, if you are not able to do this but love the sound of the role, then do please let us know as we have other roles available and will go out of way to find opportunities that can work as long as it also meets the children’s needs! 

What you will gain:

 

  • Opportunity to turn your passion for supporting young people into real positive change for a small not for profit, where every person is capable of having profound impact. 
  • Chance to be part of a lovely warm and supportive team. 

 

How to apply:

Please email team@leadinglightseducationandwellbeing.org.uk with a short paragraph on why you are interested for the role, as well as any relevant/related experience and we'll go from there! Thank-you so much in advance for being amazing and wanting to do this - its so kind and so much appreciated that you want to give your time and help others! 


We are committed to equality of opportunity and welcome applicants from under-represented groups and diverse backgrounds and those who do not always get their voices heard.

When: Every week

We require 1 shift per week (4hrs). This time includes working on the telephone helpline and any follow-up care or appropriate escalation to the team. The Children’s Helpline takes place weekly on Thursdays 2-4pm. The successful applicant must be able to regularly commit to these hours. However, if you are not able to do this but love the sound of the role, then do please let us know as we have other roles available and will go out of way to find opportunities that can work as long as it also meets the children’s needs!

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