Ozanam House is a community resource centre run by the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul. It is located on the site of the original clothing and furniture warehouse in a building that has also been used by the Society for a variety of purposes for over 100 years. Since our opening in September 2002 we have continued to develop various programmes and projects aimed at addressing the issue of social exclusion as well as the many needs of the local community.
Overview of the Volunteer Role
One of our biggest and most successful programmes is our summer projects where we engage up to 280 children and young people on an action packed activities programme throughout the months of June, July and August each year.
We engage as many volunteer as possible to support our staff in this activity programme, mentoring the children, facilitating activities where skills allow, accompanying the children and young people on weekly trips and acting as role models to the children throughout.
- Attend the Induction Training, Child Protection Training session and Summer project Training Days
- Working directly with the children and young people supporting them in all aspects of their daily activities and routines.
- Utilising and sharing your skills to ensure that the time you offer the programme is quality time
- Supporting the staff in their role of providing quality care for the children in our service
- Acting as a role model to the children, supporting them in all areas of their learning and development.
- To work as part of the summer project team with volunteers, students and managers.
- To learn about youth work and good youth work practices with the help and support of the team through daily meetings with the team
- Using policies and procedures in working with the children. Youth Leaders will get to know all of the centres policies and procedures over the first few months of work with the help and support of staff.
We run 3 summer projects as follows:
- Senior Summer Project
- to 18 years – 18th June to 13th July Monday to Friday from 12:00pm to 5pm.
- Youth Summer Project
6 to 12 years – 2nd July to 27th July Monday to Friday from 10:00am to 4pm.
- Childcare Summer Project
4 to 8 years – 30th July – 17th August Monday to Friday from 2:30pm to 5pm.
Our expectation is that volunteers commit to a minimum One week of a project. This allows for relationships top form and for consistency across the project with Children and young people seeing the same faces every day. These relationships and this consistency is vital to the success of the project.
In addition the Volunteer must make themselves available for training in advance of the project:
- Induction Training – 2 hours (evening)
- Child Protection Training – 3 hours (evening)
- Summer Project Training – 1 day (Saturday)
Other volunteers In addition, we welcome applications from potential volunteers who have specific expertise or skills which they can contribute. For example, volunteers in the past have facilitated activities in specific arts and crafts, cooking or in sports on a given week. The time commitment for these volunteers will vary and be agreed in advance with the co-ordinator.
Skills, Experience & Qualities
- Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, with the ability to establish good relationships with children and young people
- Strong commitment and enthusiasm to children and young people and an understanding of the factors affecting their lives
- Interest and commitment to developing the capacity to provide reliable support to children and young people in times of stress and act with integrity, respect and support
- Good organizational skills
- Good level of energy and fun
- An accepting and non-authoritarian approach
- Ability to work independently and as part of a team
- Reliability, patience, resilience and flexibility
- Ability to treat children and young people’s concerns with respect, tact and sensitivity
- Ability to be aware of own limits, to admit it and to ask for support
- Previous experience is desirable but not essential
Training & Support
- The volunteer will attend an induction/information night in the centre prior to the project starting and will get a general information pack to become familiar with the centre and our procedures
- A Child Protection Training session will be provided. This training will inform the volunteer of the protection and welfare of children under the Children’s Act 1997 and best practices when working with young people.
- The volunteer will attend specific Summer Project training focusing further on the details of the project itself and the role of the volunteer with lost of practical tips and guidance on all areas of the summer project
- Daily and ongoing individual supports will be provided throughout your time on the project
Support & Supervision
Daily de-briefing meeting occur throughout the summer project where volunteers review the day and get support and advice from training and qualified staff members in the centre
- General happiness and satisfaction
- Personal and professional development in terms of confidence, patience, adaptability.
- Learn new skills (decision-making and finding alternatives, leadership skills, communication skills, organizational skills, behavioural competencies …)
- The change to contribute towards the development of children and young people to enhance the sense of self-worth and belief
- Opportunity to use and develop skills and talents
- Opportunity to bring ideas on board and develop the centre
- Opportunity to work in a relaxed atmosphere
- Opportunity to develop friendships and meaningful relationships with like-minded peers
- Opportunity to build up valuable work experience
- Tea and coffee will be provided for all volunteers
If you are interested in this role, please contact us now!