We are recruiting - Volunteer Supporter

Posted 26th November 2018

About the scheme

“In the Pink” is a physical activity support scheme devised by Fitmums & Friends which seeks to support men and women to use exercise as an aid to improve their positive wellbeing and to help to manage the, often debilitating symptoms caused by social, physical or emotional health problems. Although exercise is recognised as being helpful in improving mental and physical wellbeing, it can be hard to be motivated to start or return to exercise when struggling with the negative effects of many issues.

This scheme offers 1-1 support to help people take those first steps, by linking them to an “In the Pink” Volunteer Supporter, who will help them get started by meeting up, and then attending a minimum of 3 Fitmums & Friends sessions with them. The idea is to introduce them to a means of sustaining physical activity in the longer term therefore having a positive impact on health outcomes for the individual.

Who is the scheme aiming to support?

People who are:

• keen to be more active but feel like they need support to take the first steps

• bereaved & struggling

• carers & need time out

• lonely or socially isolated

• trying to make lifestyle changes like losing weight or stopping smoking

• having relationship difficulties

• unemployed or face redundancy

• recovering from cancer & other illnesses

• experiencing baby blues/post natal depression or poor mental health

• facing major life changing experiences

• feeling low in confidence/self-esteem

Overview of role

The purpose of the Volunteer Supporter role is to offer intensive support to encourage and support individual’s participation in physical activity, with the aim of helping them to feel healthier & happier. Fitmums & Friends is particularly skilled at supporting beginners to exercise and has well established inclusive systems of support to ensure participants feel welcomed and supported. Volunteer supporters are not counsellors or therapists; they aim to motivate and support individuals to be more active.

Essential role Functions

 Volunteer Supporters will be expected to:

• Receive referrals from the scheme co-ordinator.

• Make initial contact with individuals via a phone call.

• Initial non-exercise meeting in a café/children’s centre for example (never in the individuals home).

• Attend up to 3 Fitmums & Friends sessions with the client – this may be a buggy session (with or without a child), fitness walk or a run session at any of available sessions and at any other groups that become available in lifetime of project.

• Utilise peer support to help manage the role. This takes place 4 times a year but additional support can be made available if needed.

• Ensure various documentation is completed pre and post intervention, this includes a consent form, evaluation form and a validated mood questionnaire.

• Maintain accurate records of their contacts and record outcomes and to store data safely and be aware of the need for confidentiality.

• Promote the scheme along with the Co-ordinator e.g. by visiting groups, attending meetings, manning stands at events.

• Attend regular review meetings (quarterly).

• Attend training as required for the role.

We are seeking an individual who:

• Is a current member of Fitmums & Friends.

• Is prepared to undertake training for the role.

• Is a good communicator (on phone and face to face) with confident interpersonal skills.

• Is supportive and empathetic.

• Has experience/knowledge of Fitmums & Friends and its systems and principles of support.

• Has good organisation skills/time management skills.

• Has access to a computer and is computer literate.

• Has self-employment status (or is prepared to register) and is able to raise an invoice to Fitmums & Friends for payment of expenses.

• Is enthusiastic and motivated to take on this new role and a determination to maintain the high standards of support currently offered by Fitmums & Friends.

• Is available to attend any of the existing sessions (especially daytime) which can be found here.

Individual Support workers do not need to be able to attend all sessions but we will be seeking cover from a team of support workers who between them can ensure cover across all Fitmums sessions. Support Workers will be asked which of the sessions they can offer support at.

Expenses

The scheme will pay expenses for the various stages of support facilitated by Volunteer Supporters. Not all referrals complete each stage therefore expenses are paid only for the support offered.

If an individual needs more than 3 sessions this can be discussed with the Co-ordinator.

Additional Information

• Direct/indirect experience of supporting people is not essential but is desirable however an interest in this type of work is essential.

• The Support Worker will be supported in their role by the “In the Pink Project Team” which includes Bridget Horner (Scheme Co-ordinator), Dr Nicola Green (Clinical Psychologist), Sam Barlow (Chief Officer), Vickie Hillier (Deputy Chief Officer).

• Team meetings will take place as needed to review the scheme and Support Workers will be required to attend these.

• Once trained there is no guarantee of work. The ability to pass referrals on to a Support Worker depends on referrals coming in and the availability of the support worker to be matched to the needs of a referral.

• This role is under constant review and therefore aspects of the role may be subject to change.

• The Support Worker will be required to keep an accurate record of hours worked. A regular review of workload will take place via the monthly review meetings.

• A current DBS check will be required for the role.

Training

The following courses will need to be undertaken (if the applicant does not currently have these qualifications):

- Safeguarding Children training – this can be done online or face to face

- In the Pink training which includes brief communications training and details about the volunteer supporter role and processes involved in the scheme.

- Mental Health awareness training (Mental Health Champions need not do this)

Attendance at the quarterly team meetings is essential but if unable to attend a separate meeting with the Co-ordinator will be required.

It is essential that Volunteer Supporters ensure all documentation is up to date and complete.

For further information about this role please contact:  Bridget Horner [In the Pink Scheme Co-ordinator] 07425 143835 

To apply for this role please email inthepink@fitmums.org.uk explaining why you think you would be suitable for the role, what qualities you would bring to the role and which clubs you could support someone to attend.  Deadline 7th December 2018.