|Outline of Role|
|Are you looking to volunteer for a few hours each week?
We are looking for volunteers with knowledge or experience in one or more of the following areas:
· Child Protection Procedures,
· Social Work,
· Families where Children’s Services have some involvement
· Working with parents with mental health issues
· Working with parents with learning difficulties
If you do not have previous experience training will be offered to the right candidate.
This is an important and varied role, giving you the opportunity to offer personalised information, advice and support, with the aim of enabling you to assist families who are working with Children’s Services.
The role provides you with an opportunity to work with families, from their initial involvement with Children’s Services and whilst undergoing scrutiny, through to supporting parents during proceedings in court, where they are at risk of having children removed from the family.
You will support and work together with parents to ensure their voices are heard and hopefully assist them to understand and fully engage with the process. The role will require you to have the emotional intelligence to be able to accept and manage outcomes, outcomes which may cause significant distress to families.
|The Family Advocate role could involve assisting the client with some/all of the following:
· Provide information and advice, face to face; verbally and in writing
· Liaise with families legal representatives, solicitors and barristers and attend legal appointments with the client
· Enable people to become self-advocates, by providing them with the skills and knowledge they require to speak up for themselves
· Ensure parents are supported to engage with Children’s Services’ processes.
· Help parents to understand the decisions being made
· Ensure the voice of the parent is heard
· Attend court to support parents
· Signpost clients to other organisations if required
|All volunteers are required to undertake our core training programme. This covers basic safeguarding and other key features.
New volunteers will have an opportunity to ‘shadow’ experienced volunteers and members of staff
Volunteers are required to adhere to the organisation’s policies and practice guidelines.
Reasonable expenses, including travel whilst undertaking this role will be reimbursed. This includes mileage (currently £0.45 p/mile) and parking costs.
Applications must include 2 satisfactory references. Applicants must complete a Disclosure and Barring Service check.
|An awareness of disabling barriers and how these might impact upon clients, their families and carers
Experience in or knowledge of issues relating to Child Protection
Working with adults with mental health issues or learning difficulties
Honesty, integrity and ability to keep matters confidential
An ability to be empathetic, whilst maintaining professional boundaries
Reliability, and only committing to a level of volunteering which is realistic
Good interpersonal skills
Confident and outgoing
The ability to be non-judgmental
Good verbal and written communication skills
Excellent listening skills
Ability to work on own initiative and as part of a team
Sound administrative skills, and an ability to maintain accurate case records
Commitment to attend training courses and team meetings
Ability to follow organisational policies and procedures including safeguarding, data protection and health and safety