Building capacity through volunteering – Case Study
Hackney volunteer, Malgorzata, was introduced to local organisation Hackney Playbus through VCH’s database of volunteering opportunities two years ago, as they had advertised their volunteering opportunities through VCH’s database. At the time, Hackney Playbus, was undergoing an expansion, delivering their services to more children and families across Hackney as well as strengthening their relationships with Children Centre’s across Hackney through outreach and were looking for volunteers to support them with this.
Mal had encountered hurdles when searching for employment as a teaching assistant. Everywhere she contacted said they needed two years of recent experience working with children. Hackney Playbus provides experience of working directly with children and families through training and mentoring.
“Everyone is very friendly at Hackney Playbus and you feel accepted straightaway. The fact that you are working in the community is great and I feel I am actually contributing and getting hands on experience.”
Mal’s role involves working with children and approaching families and mothers who do not know where to turn to for support, signposting them to local services. Since she had been in this situation when she sent her daughter to nursery she could empathise with what they were experiencing.
Vanessa, Volunteer Coordinator at Hackney Playbus said “Mal thrived at Hackney Playbus, and over time as her confidence grew, she was able to carry out different roles, like outreach. She built really good relationships with the families and the staff team, and she worked really hard. Mal was such a brilliant addition to the team, you could not tell the staff and volunteers apart!”
She explained that without volunteers the organisation would not be able to deliver the same volume of work they do or be able to get the outreach they have engaged with.
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