Changing your behaviour is a tough call at the best of times – even harder when you’re likely to have issues along one or more of the seven pathways to desistance (accommodation, employment, money and debt, families and relationships, health including mental health, drugs and alcohol, and thinking, attitudes and behaviour).
You need to be ‘ready’ if you want to volunteer with us. This means having a real motivation to change and resettle successfully into the community, as well as having reached a certain stage in the resettlement process. You will need to be in stable accommodation (which might be a hostel) and, while you might still have issues with drugs and alcohol, you will be fully engaged with relevant support services, and certainly able to present reliably for work free of any substance-related influence.
We can’t offer paid employment, but volunteering with us will improve your chances of getting paid employment. Once you’ve demonstrated your work ethic, reliability, trustworthiness, team-working skills etc etc we can provide a detailed work record and reference, with evidence of your specific skills and abilities.
Volunteering is a way of using your time purposefully. It offers you a network of positive contacts (rather than your old mates who are likely to pull you back into trouble) and a reason for getting up in the morning. It will stop you from slumping into a depression when times are hard. And there’s often free pizza around at lunchtime!
Our support worker has walked the walk himself and can advise on help available from other agencies, welfare benefits, as well as behavioural tips and techniques that will improve your chances of successful resettlement and not reoffending.
We ask all our potential volunteers to complete an application form and provide us with two references. If you are an ex-offender, one of your references should be from an agency that knows you and your offending history, and believes that volunteering with us would be a sensible step for you to take as well as safe for everyone else at Companions.
If you want to talk to someone informally about the possibility of volunteering with us, feel free to call Nigel, our Support Worker, on 07487 309536.
Please be aware that we have a busy schedule in the bakery; you may need to leave a message or he may need to ask to call you back at a later time.
We look forward to meeting you!