We hear almost daily about the workforce pressures in health and social care. At the same time health and care remains one of the most popular areas for volunteering, with many volunteers thinking about future careers opportunities.
Here are two ways in which we can encourage volunteers on such a journey: firstly by working with Helpforce on a ‘volunteer to career’ pilot project within an NHS clinical environment; secondly by signposting volunteers to take advantage of the various apprenticeships and training available for employment in social care.
1. VOLUNTEER TO CAREER PILOT OPPORTUNITY
Bevan Commission and Helpforce Cymru (WCVA) are working with HelpForce UK on a programme called ‘Volunteer to Career’. This aims to impact on NHS workforce needs at local level through the design and development of ‘volunteer to career’ initiatives.
As well as responding to local workforce priorities, there is potential for projects to address inequalities of opportunity by targeting under-represented groups
CALL FOR PROJECT PARTNERS
We are seeking expressions of interest from clinical leaders in a range of health -related professions who:
- Want to develop a volunteer to career pathway within their own organisation and clinical field
- Can lead a ‘volunteer to career’ initiative in line with the strategic aim of the programme, working with internal colleagues (eg HR, volunteering services) and with external training and support
- Are willing to work with Helpforce to agree appropriate data collection and data reporting measures for the evaluation of impact and insight
- Can commit to project delivery between January 2022 and January 2023
The deadline for expressions of interest is the end of November. By that time applicants should complete a baseline self assessment which assesses how the organisation is currently delivering against a volunteer to career agenda. It identifies potential areas for development in relation to key strategic and operational priorities, clinical leadership, community partnerships, environment and culture, volunteer to careers pathways and workforce planning.
The self assessment involves gathering information from colleagues and existing volunteers and it is recommended that a few weeks be allowed to complete this.
If selected to join the programme, you will benefit from:
- Support in design, development, evaluation and ‘packaging’ and spread of successful initiatives
- Shared learning and peer support through a UK wide network of pilot projects
- Access to a wide range of training and peer learning through Bevan Commission
- Helpforce Impact and insight expertise, supporting evaluation of individual projects and of the programme as a whole
- Opportunity to present to a wider Wales audience at a Bevan Commission showcase event, December 2022
- Limited funding may be available to cover incidental developmental costs such staff cover for training days
HOW TO GET INVOLVED
The first step for anyone interested would be to contact Fiona Liddell, Helpforce Cymru Manager (firstname.lastname@example.org) to find out more.
2. SOCIAL CARE APPRENTICESHIPS
Apprenticeships offer a way to gain training, develop new skills and qualifications whilst you work and earn. For volunteers who want to develop a career in Social Care they could be an ideal next step.
Information about apprenticeships available and how to get started can be found on Social Care Wales website.
The We Care Wales portal highlights the wide range of opportunities available in social care, early years and childcare including information about an introductory fully funded, four day online training course Introduction to Social Care.
Volunteer standards for induction and training of volunteers in health and social care have been developed by Helpforce. There are learning resources to support these standards, including mandatory modules for those volunteering within NHS, resources from Social Care Wales and from Third Sector Support Wales (TSSW). This information will be published shortly, as an information sheet on the TSSW Knowledge Hub.