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Care Leaver Helpline volunteer

About this role

Listening Works is an innovative virtual service supporting Care Leavers aged 18 to 27, through a national network of home-based volunteers.

Worries can feel worse in the evening hours, when normal avenues of support are likely to be closed. Listening Works is operational 7 days a week, from 6pm until midnight. Our volunteers offer a listening ear to care experienced young adults via web chat, text message and telephone calls.

What is the time commitment?

This role is for 3 hours per week approximately. Minimum commitment for 6 months minimum.

Who will you be helping?

Care Leavers, Individuals or families living with additional needs, Teenagers, Young Adults, Young People, Young people in Care

People who have lived in care during their childhood disproportionately experience challenging life situations such as isolation, poverty, homelessness, addiction, work and education difficulties, and mental ill health.

The restrictions brought in during the Covid-19 pandemic significantly increased these pressures by enforcing further social isolation during the ‘Lockdown’ periods. Listening Works virtual support service has seen increasing numbers of care experienced young adults make contact to talk about not only the stresses of living through the pandemic, but of a whole host of support issues.

What difference will you make?

Some people contact Listening Works to have somebody to chat with when they are feeling alone; some may be struggling with a particular problem and need to talk it over with someone in a non-judgemental, safe space; some are looking for advice or guidance relating to specific issues, such as housing or benefits.

As a volunteer, you will be on hand to support care experienced young adults to talk, share worries, distract themselves from loneliness, or possibly to sign post them to avenues of support.

By taking on one of our evening-time shifts, you will ensure that care leavers have someone to talk to when most other services are closed. 

Who are we looking for?

There is no typical Listening Works volunteer. We want our volunteers to be as diverse as the people we support. We welcome applications from volunteers from all walks of life, with a variety of life experiences, including those who are care experienced, and men and women from B.A.M.E and LBGTQIA+ communities.

Listening Works volunteers need to have a computer and mobile phone, and access to the internet at home. In addition, this role would suit people who:

  • Are able to feel and show empathy for vulnerable and struggling young adults
  • Are reliable and able to make and see through a regular commitment
  • Are able to build trusting relationships quickly
  • Are able to manage their own and others’ emotions
  • Are able to demonstrate resilience and remain calm in times of stress
  • Are able to communicate effectively via webchat, text message or telephone
  • Are computer literate
  • Are friendly and non-judgemental in their approach to others
  • Are willing to undertake online training, preparation and induction
  • Are willing to follow the organisation’s policy and procedures in order to keep themselves and others safe.

What's in it for you?

All Family Action volunteers tell us that volunteering with us can be challenging at times, but it is also very rewarding to know they are making a positive difference in the lives of others.

As a Listening Works volunteer, you will also benefit from:

  • Remote digital training to ensure that you are fully equipped with the knowledge and skills needed for this role
  • Regular contact with your supervisor to discuss any challenges you are facing, and celebrate your progress in the role
  • Ongoing support from our team of professional caseworkers and supervisors
  • The knowledge that you are supporting some of society’s most vulnerable young people
  •  Connecting with others to make a real difference to a young adult’s day to day life
  •  Gaining a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by some members of your community.

All Family Action volunteers receive full training and access to ongoing supervision and support for as long as they are in the role. For Listening Works, this includes full training on the use of our online system. 

How can you find out more?

You may like to chat with a member of staff about whether this is the right role for you, or you may be ready to apply right now. 

Either way, just click the ‘I’m interested’ button below to leave your contact details, and a member of staff will be in touch to discuss your next steps in becoming a Family Action volunteer. 

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