Home-Start Monmouthshire

Training and Support

Support for volunteers

We cherish, train and support our volunteers. These are some of the ways we would make sure you feel confident supporting families:

Home visiting volunteers

Home-Start volunteers are thoroughly trained and supported before and during their time with a family, and can expect:

  • An induction to Home-Start’s Service

  • 40 hours of preparation training, run weekly, before meeting your first family

  • Regular support and supervision sessions with staff at the Home-Start Monmouthshire Office

  • Paid expenses during training and while you support a family

We offer the opportunity to gain a formal qualification (sometimes known as accreditation), as well as additional training to supplement your preparation and induction.

Further Training

After 6 months as a home visiting volunteer you may be offered the opportunity to become a volunteer for our Healthy Minds-Healthy Families Project. This project works specifically with families who are experiencing poor mental health. As a volunteer you may find yourself in a situation where by a family is in distress and you will need to draw upon particular skills in order to manage the immediate situation.

The Project requires the volunteer to complete a 10 hour training course.

Trustee volunteers

Trustees are fully inducted into Home-Start before beginning their new role; they will receive:

  • An induction day, introducing Home-Start’s Service and your responsibilities

  • Safeguarding Training: providing an overview of safeguarding children in Home-Start, how to respond to concerns about a child and understand where to go for advice and support

  • Training on providing a high quality service to families (quality assurance)

  • Paid expenses

  • Access to Home-Start UK’s Intranet – full of information and guidance on running a local Home-Start

  • The support of specialist staff at Home-Start UK

Additional training may be available depending on the particular role you undertake.

How volunteering may benefit you, as well as the families you support

There are many reasons why people volunteer for our project, but they all want to give their time to support families. As a result volunteers tell us that they have experienced:

  • better health and well-being

  • improved personal and skills development

  • improved chances for work

  • and are more self-confident

“I have thoroughly enjoyed being a volunteer for Home-Start and don’t want to give it up, but feel I haven’t got the time, due to my new job. I am very grateful for the opportunity you have given me and believe I wouldn’t be in the job I am now (Teaching Assistant) without this experience. Thank you”  Bev.

Training and Support

Volunteer Preparation Course

Coffee Morning

Aims of session

  • To introduce Home-Start to the volunteers and explain the purpose of the organisation, and the different projects run by Home-Start Monmouthshire.

  • To give the volunteers the opportunity to meet each other and to learn about the format of the volunteer preparation course and how it will be run.

Week 1 Role of a Home-Start volunteer, getting started as a home visitor

Aims of session

  • To think about why families need support and how Home-Start can help.

  • Identify why you want to be a volunteer for Home-Start.

  • To reflect on appropriate behaviour whilst visiting families.

Week 2 How Home-Start helps families

Aims of session

  • To explore the needs of family members.

  • To understand the pressures there may be on a parent with complex needs.

  • To help the volunteers think about the pitfalls of ‘doing for’ a family.

Week 3 Being a Home-Start volunteer, confidentiality

Aims of session

  • To explain how volunteers are supervised and supported.

  • Volunteers to expore how to maintain their motivation and commitment.

  • To understand the privilege and responsibiolity of being trusted.

  • To explore what information is confidential and why.

Week 4 Values and attitudes

Aims of session

  • To help volunteers that each person is an individual and different.

  • To express views on various issues and hear different opinions expressed by other people.

Week 5 Parents and their children

Aims of session

  • To raise volunteers’ awareness of the complexity of being a parent.

  • To help volunteers value their own experience and knowledge of parenting and what they bring to their Home-Start work.

  • To help volunteers plan how they can offer play opportunities to children in the families they visit.

Week 6 family life and supporting parents

Aims of session

  • To remind volunteers that families are diverse in nature.

  • To start volunteers thinking about the range of difficulties experienced by families, including depression and domestic abuse.

  • To begin looking at the effects providing support to families under stress may have on Home-Start volunteers.

Week 7 Safeguarding and protecting children

Aims of session

  • To introduce the topic of safeguarding and protecting children.

  • To consider when acceptable behaviour by adults towards children passes over into abusive behaviour.

  • To know what to do when concerned about a child.

  • To understand own role in safeguarding / protecting children and to ensure Home-Start’s safe practice in safeguarding / protecting children.

Week 8 Bringing the course to a close

Aims of session

  • To enable volunteers to reflect on when they need support.

  • To alert volunteers to strategies for keeping safe.

  • Identify key issues when coming to the end of a relationship with a Home-Start family.