Home-Start Monmouthshire

Types of Volunteer

Role of a Home-Start Volunteer

Home-Start is a voluntary organisation in which volunteers offer regular support, friendship and practical help to young families under stress in their own homes helping to prevent family crisis or breakdown.  Volunteers, who are parents or have parenting experience understand that sometimes family life can be tough and that is why their support can be so valuable in helping another family.  Volunteers are central to the Home-Start service; we could not offer families the same support without them.

Volunteers offer a realistic flexible response and a caring attitude rather than a clearly defined method of working.

What do Home-Start volunteers do?

Home-Start volunteers aim to build the confidence and independence of the family by:

  • Offering support, friendship and practical help

  • Committing to a minimum of 1-3 hours per week home-visiting according to the family’s needs

  • Visiting the families in their own homes, where the dignity and identity of each individual can be respected and protected

  • Reassuring families that difficulties in bringing up children are not unusual

  • Emphasising the positive aspects of family life

  • Developing a relationship with the family in which time can be shared and an understanding developed, providing a regular, reliable presence in that family

  • Drawing on their own experience of parenting to encourage parents’ strengths and emotional well-being for the ultimate benefit of their own children

  • Encouraging families to widen their network of relationships and to use effectively the support and services available in the community

What is the time commitment?

Home-Start volunteers give a high level of commitment and reliability and in return, receive high quality preparation and ongoing training, supervision and support from the Home-Start Manager/Coordinator/Organiser.

In addition to weekly home visiting:

  • Attendance at the initial course of preparation.

  • Attendance at monthly support meetings –these are optional and you may only want to attend the sessions that will add to your skills/knowledge.

  • Attendance at supervision sessions with the Manager/ Coordinator/Organiser according to Home-Start guidance, every 6-8 weeks.

Trustee Role Description

Roles:

With other trustees to hold Home-Start Monmouthshire in trust for current and future beneficiaries by:

  • providing leadership and direction for the scheme within the ethos and values of Home-Start.

  • ensuring that the scheme has a clear mission, vision and strategic direction and is focussed on achieving these.

  • being responsible for the effective performance and management of the scheme.

  • ensuring that the scheme complies with all legal and regulatory requirements, the objects of the charity, the governing documents including the Home-Start Standards and Methods of Practice and the Agreement and quality standards.

  • securing and acting as guardians of the scheme’s assets.

  • ensuring that the scheme’s governance is of the highest possible standard.

  • undertaking an ambassadorial role for Home-Start.

  • appointing sub-committees and agreeing their terms of reference.

Responsibilities:

  • setting the strategy and undertaking the strategic management of the scheme.

  • ensuring that the scheme pursues its objects as defined in the governing documents.

  • ensuring the scheme accounts for its activities to its funders, the relevant Charity Regulators, its members, the local  community and others.

  • ensuring that the scheme applies its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objects.

  • ensuring the financial stability of the scheme.

  • ensuring proper accounting records are kept.

  • ensuring the proper investment of the scheme’s funds.

  • ensuring that the major risks to which the scheme is exposed are reviewed annually and managed.

  • ensuring the effective and efficient administration of the scheme.

  • approving the scheme’s policies.

  • ensuring the scheme fulfils its responsibilities as a good employer and is an effective manager and supervisor of staff and volunteers.

  • ensuring the scheme is appropriately insured.

  • protecting and managing the property of the scheme.

  • monitoring and evaluating the work of the scheme and contributing to quality assurance self assessments and reviews.

  • safeguarding the good name and ethos of Home-Start.

Duties:

Collective

  • approving the strategic plan annually and monitoring progress against it.

  • determining/approving the annual budget and monitoring progress against it.

  • preparing and approving the annual report and accounts.

  • ensuring compliance with the Home-Start Agreement and Quality Assurance system.

Individual

  • attending meetings of trustees.

  • playing an active part in the trustees’ meetings and deliberations.

  • exercising due care and attention and using reasonable skill in dealing with the scheme’s affairs.

  • using own skills, knowledge and experience to help the trustees reach sound decisions.

  • taking the lead in any trustees’ activities where the trustee has special knowledge.

  • avoiding any conflict of interests.

  • sitting on committees when required.

  • sitting on recruitment and disciplinary panels if required.

  • reflecting annually on the board’s performance and your own performance as a trustee.

  • taking part in Quality Assurance self assessments and reviews.

  • ensuring that major decisions and policies are made by trustees acting collectively.

Person specification for a trustee

  • Commitment to the scheme.

  • Willingness to devote the necessary time and effort.

  • Strategic vision.

  • Good, independent judgement.

  • Ability to think creatively.

  • Willingness to speak their mind.

  • Understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities  of trusteeship.

  • Ability to work effectively as a member of a team.

Abiding by Nolan's seven principles of public life: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.