Would you like to become one of our beloved ‘companions’?
Can you spare a couple of hours each week to spend time supporting one of our clients to make the most out of all that London has to offer. That could be a visit to local park or gallery, accompanying a client to a hospital or health care appointment, or be someone with whom to share a smile over a cup of tea.
We are seeking under and post graduates, and young professionals to volunteer for the position of an MSH @ Home companion. Our Companions are ‘beloved’ because by giving your time you can help:
- Our clients to continue their passions – be that fine art, opera or theatre, or simply a pint down the pub. Many of our clients look forward to the time spent each week with their companion, and the support and encouragement you provide them helps to reduce their isolation. This provides motivation for them to plan ahead, giving them the confidence to continue to pursue the leisure and relaxation pursuits that they enjoy.
- Discover their skills – through our unique interests profile matching process, we try to allocate our Companions with clients who have similar interests. This means you can ask them about their skills and hobbies, and share their life experiences, whilst at the same time you can help them to embrace the advances that are changing the modern world through the greater use of technology.
- Log the memories – by taking time to chat and do activities together, you can assist our clients to reflect on their lives, helping them compile their memories with you. For those clients with early stages of dementia, encouraging them to talk about an old photo album, scrapbook or journal can be helpful in assisting them to connect to the present.
- Honour their past – by giving of your time you are connecting to the community and acknowledging the past contributions made by many of our clients, who were in the forefront of fighting for the civil liberties we enjoy in UK society today. It is these unique contributions that allow you as a young person to enjoy the freedoms of equality and diversity.
The benefits of volunteering as an MSH @ Home Companion include:
- Connect to the community in which you study, work or live, making new friends and contacts, and learning new skills
- Increase your social and relationship skills. Our clients often form a mentor-like relationship with their Companion.
- Improve your self confidence and provide a sense of purpose. Building a relationship with older people or those less able than you can provide a sense of achievement. Taking up a new hobby or activity with your client can improve your confidence as well as theirs.
- It can also improve your career prospects. A survey carried out by TimeBank through Reed Executive showed that among 200 of the UK’s leading businesses
- 73% of employers would recruit a candidate with volunteering experience over one
- 94% of employers believe that volunteering can add to skills without
- 94% of employees who volunteered to learn new skills had benefited either by getting their first job, improving their salary, or being promoted
(Source – woldvolunteerweb.org – http://www.worldvolunteerweb.org/resources/how-to- guides/volunteer/doc/benefits-of-volunteering.html)
To become a Companion with MSH @ Home you must:
- Be aged between 20-30 years – our companionship volunteering scheme is in part about a fusion of generations. The young benefit from the life experience of their elders, whilst the elders are supported to enjoy benefits of the modern world with the guidance of the young.
- Be an under graduate, post graduate or young working professional
- Be able to give a minimum of two hours per week to fulfil your Companion role
- Be willing to attend a half day selection process and provide two character references
- Be willing to undertake an enhanced Disclosure & Baring Service (DBS) check
- Be willing to attend a half day induction programme and an on-going monthly group supervision session (2 hrs)
- What to make a positive contribution to the community in which you live, work or study