View Case Studies related to:
“My husband and Mary’s elderly friend were both cared for at Amberleigh House,” explains Beryl. “The way the staff here looked after our loved ones will stay with us forever and that’s why we both volunteer now, to try, in our own little way, to say thanks.”
“We help with activities like bingo, reminiscence sessions and sing-a-longs,” says Mary. “Dementia can be a very sad illness, but our role means that we can make our residents lives happier.”
And it’s not just the residents who Beryl and Mary help, residents’ families also benefit from their personal experiences. “We know how it feels to place a loved one in a home, so we are able to empathise with families, offering them support and reassurance,” says Beryl.
Mary agrees, “I think it is important when you retire that you do something of real purpose and value. That is why it is such a pleasure volunteering at Amberleigh House, where our work is both valued and valuable.”
“I enjoyed my degree course, but after I graduated, I was still unsure about what to do next. The media side of my degree was my real passion, but I had also enjoyed learning more about community care issues”, explains Laura. “Gaining a placement at CIC meant that I could pursue my passion for media and marketing, but in the social care sector,”
“The marketing team encouraged me to get involved in some really exciting projects; I helped write and design an edition of You First magazine, wrote news stories for the website and also attended an awards conference to help promote CIC,” says Laura. “Having the opportunity to work in the marketing department of a big national organisation helped me decide that this was definitely where I wanted to take my career.”
Laura believes that volunteering adds value to the CV of new graduates in this difficult job market. “Shortly after the placement, I got my dream job, working in marketing. The practical experience I gained during my placement was a huge factor in helping me secure my new role, as I was able to show employers that I could put into practice what I learned on my degree.”
“I joined Community Integrated Care when I was only 18 and initially started work at another service which was home to five people with learning difficulties,” says Michelle. “This was a great job and gave me lots of experience, but when the job working with Elaine came up I jumped at the chance.”
“I have known Elaine since I was only 8 or 9, so she feels like family to me. I was excited at the thought of being part of her life, helping her become more independent, do the things she loves and generally, enjoy a great quality of life.”
“Elaine lives in her own bungalow and because of her needs, she has one-to-one support. But she’s a very independent lady and is always on the go. If we’re not down at the Metro Centre on a shopping trip or taking a drive out to the countryside, we’ll be at the cinema or down at the bowling alley.”
“It’s great knowing that as well as making sure Elaine is leading a full and happy life, I am also developing and building a strong career in care. Since joining Community Integrated Care I have done tons of training, been supported to complete my NVQ 2 in Social Care and had a promotion. Next, I plan on doing my NVQ 3 – I really feel like the sky’s the limit!”
“Every day I think how fortunate I am to be able to do a job that I love, with people that I love. Community Integrated Care is such a special place, because the people we support are so special, and as long as they are happy, I’m happy too.”
Image: Michelle (pictured left) with Elaine.
The team, who were led by one of the airport’s HR Manager’s, Ian Parkinson-Atherton, helped put the finishing touches to the home’s communal gardens by painting their large picket fence, a job so big that they are returning for a second day to finish it!
Ian says: “We are lucky at Manchester Airport in that we all get the opportunity to volunteer for up to two days each year. It’s up to us how we spend our time, but as a department we do usually try to volunteer as a team; we find that not only do we get more done in a short space of time, but it’s also a great boost for team morale!”
Helen McNabb, the Airport’s Community Relations Co-ordinator adds: “People often ask me why we have this volunteer policy in place and the answer is simple: not only does it give a large organisation like ours the chance to demonstrate our genuine commitment to supporting our local community, but it also helps promote and encourage better teamwork, learning and self-development for the people who take part.”
“Every year 50,000 staff from Barclays get the chance to take part in community fundraising and volunteering projects,” explains Barclays IT Manager and Project Team Leader, Leanne Dow. “Each team choose their own cause, but the aim is always to help out on a project which will make a real and lasting difference.”
“We thought long and hard about what we could do to make our mark on St Stephens and came up with the idea of creating a reminiscence room for residents to relax in with family and friends,” she continues. “So, armed with rolls of vintage-style wallpapers, antique furniture, a sewing machine and lots of lovely fabrics, we set about transforming an ordinary sitting room into a step back in time!”
The results of the team’s hard work are truly amazing, delighting residents and staff alike: “The work the Barclays team have done for us is terrific and everyone at St Stephens is so thrilled with it,” says Home Manager, Cindy Southhall. “Residents now use the new room to sit with family and friends, listening to the radio or just having a cup of tea. As well as being a real talking point, all the old fashioned memorabilia is really comforting to residents, stirring fond memories of years gone by.”