Volunteering with verve – keen new recruits on pathway to help families in tough times

Second Image: Katherine Cooke, right, observes volunteers doing an activity.

Six new volunteers have embarked on their journey towards helping local children and parents going through tough times.

The new batch of recruits took part in an induction and training day on Monday at Family Friends’ offices in Imperial Road, Windsor. They were: Lesley Bennett, Yanneth Boland, Paula Brown, Sally James, Hijab Masood, Cecile Ruizcielo-Henderson and Kelly St.Claire. Each will be assigned to families in the borough that need our support in coming months.

The group learnt a whole range of things during the day, including more about the work our charity does, safeguarding, and how to best assist families in certain scenarios. They took part in exercises including one designed to boost listening and talking skills.

Katherine Cooke, our volunteer coordinator, organised the day and led the training, helped by Kerry Byde, our administrator, and Tracy Muschamp, our service lead, who headed the safeguarding training. Volunteer Jim Alexander came in to discuss his own experiences and answer questions about working with families.

Chief Executive Jane Drapkin gave the group a presentation in the morning session to explain in more detail what Family Friends does. She said: “Our volunteers are the integral lifeblood of our organisation and they are hugely valued by us and all of the families they support.”

Katherine said: “The volunteers showed great energy and enthusiasm to get started with helping struggling local mums and children. It was brilliant to see how engaged and interested they were in the training and how excited they were to be undertaking this work with Family Friends. I’m really looking forward to working with each and everyone more closely and I have no doubt they’re going to be big assets for this charity.”

Each volunteer received a certificate for completing the training.

Katherine said: “It can seem like a daunting thing to do – to not only volunteer but undergo training and give up a full day. It’s a big commitment. So, a big thank you to all six who came along and took part with so much verve and enthusiasm. As well as learning lots, it was clear everyone had fun and enjoyed meeting new people. It’s such a worthy cause to be part of, so if anyone reading this fancies finding out becoming a volunteer with us, please get in touch!”