Volunteer Stories – Mo

I started volunteering for home-start back in 2007 I believe!  I originally applied for a job as an administrator and was impressed by the trustees that I met and the ethos of the organisation.  I was asked if I would like to become a volunteer and as  Home-Start supports something I am very passionate about I agreed to train as a volunteer.  I believe the early years of a child’s life are very important and supporting a family at this stage is not rewarding just to the volunteer but can help set a family off on the right track for the rest of the child’s life and set good grounding for any other siblings.

I have had some time away from volunteering as I have supported my own family, with elderly relatives and extended family, I have lost count of the number of families I have supported over the years but it is definitely more than 7!  The support has varied from helping the mum to increase in self confidence to helping a family decide for themselves where they would like to live and helping them through the implications of that to helping with general behavioural issues and support in the home.  The most precious thing I believe I can give is the time to listen and not  to be judgemental but maybe offer suggestions or alternative ways of thinking.

The advice I would give someone thinking of becoming a Home-Start volunteer?  Do it!  If you like playing with children and listening to parents and are willing to act without judging then the rewards are immense.

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Abseil Update

Thank you to everyone who took part in the Abseil in May and all who sponsored us.  With your help we have smashed our target of £5000 and raised over £7000 so far with donations still coming in.

Thank you

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Volunteers Week – A Big Thank You

The Home-Start team would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our volunteers for the wonderful work they do supporting families in North Somerset.

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Volunteer Stories – Our Volunteer Jane

Jane abseiling for Home-Start North Somerset

How long have you been volunteering for Home-Start?

I have been volunteering for Home-Start North Somerset for over two years after 10  sessions of training.

Why did you decide to volunteer for Home-Start?

Having been a teacher for many years and recently having retired and become a grandparent, I wanted to work as a volunteer where my skills could be put to good. Keeping up to date with the latest baby/child care techniques and ideas with my two grandchildren was a great help. It’s changed a lot since I was a young mum although good old common sense still holds true.

I was also aware that the facilities for new mums, especially those on their own or with more than one youngster can be daunting. Early support and intervention when needed is vital and
can reduce greater needs in the future.

How many families have you supported and what support have you given?

I have worked with three families. The first was for only a short time whilst the mum regained her confidence. I have kept in touch with her and things are going really well.
The second was for nearly two years and I have now signed off and agreed to meet up occasionally. Much reassurance was required and a lot of listening as well as signposting. Having watched her daughter from a few months to two years old and see mum gain confidence has been rewarding.

My current family offers different challenges and I am learning more and more about benefits and accessing additional help.

What advice would you offer to someone thinking about becoming a Home-Start volunteer?

Be prepared for tears and laughter. Have a tool box of toys, light bulbs, a full Phone battery and a plane!! I had to plane a door so the family could get out after the door had swollen in the rain! Small changes can take a long time for the family and are wonderful to watch when they happen.

Do it and know that a family, or more, will be able to grow all the more confidently as you have helped facilitated that change. There may be times that a volunteer may have to step back as the professional services are required.

Would you like to become a volunteer and help families in North Somerset? Why not call us for a chat? 01934 419396


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Volunteer Stories – Our Volunteer Mel

I have been a volunteer for three years. I decided to become a volunteer as my children had all gone to school and I had the spare time. I saw the advert in the school newsletter. I knew how it felt to be a young mum and isolated without any support network and wanted to help someone who was also in that situation.

I’ve supported 5 families all of them have had issues, but they have all been different.

My advice to someone thinking of becoming a volunteer is to give it a go. It is very rewarding knowing you are helping someone who is in a desperate situation and you making their life a little bit easier with either advice, practical help or by just visiting them, even if it is only maybe a cup of tea and a chat.

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Vacancy for Perinatal Mental Health Project Coordinator

20 hours per week
on a fixed term contract until end of March 2019

(NJC Salary Scale 21-27 £19,126 – £22,958 pro rata)

Home-Start is a voluntary organisation which is committed to the welfare of families with at least one child under the age of five. We recruit and train volunteers to offer regular support, friendship and practical help to families who are facing challenges across the whole of North Somerset.

Home-Start North Somerset is looking to recruit an enthusiastic, appropriately experienced and committed worker to organise trained volunteers to deliver a range of practical and emotional support services to parents affected by or suffering from low mood, anxiety, postnatal depression and isolation during pregnancy and after their baby’s birth.

You will have proven experience of working with families with young children to improve their health and well-being and an understanding of perinatal mental health issues. You will have knowledge of the voluntary sector and be able to demonstrate working collaboratively with stakeholders.
If you are interested in joining our small friendly team to make a real difference to the lives of families and their children we’d like to hear from you.
Location Weston super Mare
Application deadline: Monday 3rd July 2017 5.00pm
Interview date: TBC

For more information call 01934 419396 or email homestart.ns@googlemail.com

or download the application form below and return to us

Home-Start North Somerset is committed to quality, equality and valuing diversity.

The successful applicant will be subject to an enhanced DBS check.

Registered Charity No.1111549 Company No. 5555050

Application form guidance for candidates

PNMH coorinator job description

Person Spec PNMH coordinator

Monitoring Form

Application Form

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Home-Start Abseil Update

What a great day we had last Saturday! 30 Abseilers rose to the challenge of coming down that mighty cliff – well done everyone involved.

It was lovely to see so many friends and family there supporting, just what Home-Start is about!

We are busy counting money and it is still coming in but we are very close to our target of £5,000 and think it is possible we will exceed that so we are delighted! We will keep you posted when we get a final total.

All in all this was a brilliant event, thank you to everyone involved.

There will be photographs to follow.

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We are recruiting volunteers now

You can make a real difference to families who are struggling to enjoy family life for a variety of reasons by volunteering for Home-Start.

You will need to be a parent and able to offer friendship and support to a family with children under 5 in North Somerset.

We offer comprehensive support and training.

Phone us now for more details on how to become a volunteer.
Call the Home-Start Team on 01934 419396

Successful applicants will be subject to an enhanced DBS check

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Nailsea May Fayre

Home-Start North Somerset Trustees raised a fantastic £198 at Nailsea May Fayre this weekend. There was an opportunity to meet with previous Home-Start families, volunteers and referrers.

Thank you to everyone who contributed.


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Spring Newsletter

Please find below a link to our latest newsletter.  It includes news of our recent training course and charity abseil, as well as information about ‘What’s On’ in North Somerset for families, and links to useful websites, such as the government update on Child Car Seat regulations.  To find out about these and more, click on…


Happy Reading!

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