THE CHIL­DREN’S SO­CI­ETY

Glossop Advertiser - - News - Joanna Hunt

IOFTEN tell peo­ple about the vi­tal help The Chil­dren’s So­ci­ety’s project work­ers of­fer vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren across Greater Manch­ester.

Their sup­port can make a real dif­fer­ence to chil­dren’s lives and last year we worked with more than 1,000 chil­dren and young peo­ple in the area.

How­ever, be­hind much of our work we also have a ded­i­cated army of vol­un­teers, cam­paign­ers and sup­port­ers, who are pas­sion­ate about what we do and want to help us help as many young peo­ple as pos­si­ble.

For in­stance, our Rochdale Chil­dren’s Rights ser­vice is sup­ported by vol­un­teers called In­de­pen­dent Visi­tors, who of­fer ex­tra long-term sup­port to chil­dren in care and act as some­one they can talk to – maybe over a cof­fee or on a trip to the cin­ema.

The vol­un­teer men­tors, who work with our Greater Manch­ester Miss­ing Ser­vice, pro­vide ad­di­tional sup­port to chil­dren who have al­ready re­ceived our help hav­ing re­turned after run­ning away from home or care. ●

We also have vol­un­teers who sup­port the weekly youth group run by our city re­gion wide Hope refugee project, and help out with day trips and other so­cial ac­tiv­i­ties.

Many chil­dren tell us how im­por­tant this sup­port is to them and our vol­un­teers find the ex­pe­ri­ence hugely re­ward­ing.

Most vol­un­teers say they have also ben­e­fited per­son­ally from the ex­pe­ri­ence, for rea­sons as var­ied as gain­ing new skills and con­fi­dence to feel­ing val­ued and mak­ing new friends. We have vol­un­teer­ing va­can­cies com­ing up across Greater Manch­ester for our miss­ing from home and refugee ser­vices.

The roles are suit­able for any­one over the age of 18, so if you’re in­ter­ested and have some spare time – whether just a few hours a week or sev­eral days - please get in touch by email­ing scm@child­soc. org.uk

Ear­lier in the year we were re-awarded the ‘In­vest­ing in Vol­un­teers’ qual­ity stan­dard which means we are one of the top or­gan­i­sa­tions to vol­un­teer for and pro­vide won­der­ful train­ing, sup­port and recog­ni­tion for good work.

But there are also other ways in which you can sup­port The Chil­dren’s So­ci­ety.

Among the more than 1,100 peo­ple who give their time and en­ergy for us in Greater Manch­ester, are also sup­port­ers who help us to raise vi­tal funds – by as­sist­ing in our eight shops, for in­stance, or by sup­port­ing out an­nual Christ­in­gle ap­peal.

Oth­ers sup­port our cam­paigns, for in­stance, by sign­ing pe­ti­tions, or writ­ing to their MP to help us se­cure changes in pol­icy which will make a pos­i­tive dif­fer­ence to chil­dren’s lives.

And we have vol­un­teer speak­ers who de­liver talks to lo­cal groups and churches to raise aware­ness of our work.

They may have dif­fer­ent roles, but these fan­tas­tic sup­port­ers have one thing in com­mon – the ap­pre­ci­a­tion of us all here at The Chil­dren’s So­ci­ety. With­out this vi­tal sup­port we would not be able to make the dif­fer­ence we do to the safety, hap­pi­ness and well-be­ing of so many vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren, in Greater Manch­ester and beyond.

So if, you’re one of these un­sung heroes, thank you.

Or, if you’ve not been in­volved with The Chil­dren’s So­ci­ety pre­vi­ously but would like to find out more about how you can help us visit chil­drensso­ci­ety.org.uk/ what-you-can-do or call 0300 303 7000.

Joanna Hunt

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