The Independent Visitor Scheme is for children who are looked after by Blackpool Council who are between the ages of 8-25. Independent Visitors are matched with children who have little or no contact with their birth families, or where it is considered in their best interests for them to have an adult outside of the professional network, to provide a consistent, positive and supportive relationship. Independent Visitors befriend and advise the individual child they are matched with, visiting them at their foster or children’s home on a regular basis and taking them out, eg. to the park or beach, swimming, bowling, etc
Male and female volunteers over 21 years old, of all ages and backgrounds, are encouraged to apply. Men and IVs under 40 are in particular short supply!
You will ideally have the following skills –
- Be able to relate to children and young people and have fun with them!
- Have patience and willing to focus on the individual needs of the child.
- Be able to listen without prejudice.
- Ready to support the child to voice their views.
- Keen to participate in activities with them.
- Consistent, reliable and trustworthy.
- Be able to maintain appropriate levels of confidentiality
The regularity of visits is dependent on the wishes of the child and the volunteer’s availability. Visits are usually once monthly, initially for a few hours, but often for longer as the relationship develops. It is very likely to include weekend appointments and possibly visits after school or in school holidays.
Where possible volunteers should commit to more than one year, with the view of developing a longer-term relationship throughout the young person’s time in care and potentially beyond. However, if the volunteer can only commit to a shorter-term commitment this may also be beneficial to a young person and applications will still be considered.
- Regularly visit a child who is looked after by Blackpool Council
- Develop a positive, consistent and supportive relationship with them
- Listen and provide sound advice from a lay perspective and ensure the child’s voice is heard
- Be there for them during meetings if they ask for your support
- Encourage the child to participate in decision-making
- Contribute to the care plan for the child and work in co-operation with others who have responsibility for the child, including their carer(s) and social worker
- Be committed to ongoing personal development and supervision
- Has experience of positive engagement with children and/or young people, which may have been gained in a personal or voluntary capacity (desirable, not essential).
- Can commit time and energy to the role.
- Enjoys supporting a child, spending time with them and engaging in activities.
- Can visit a child regularly and maintain contact throughout the match.
- Can commit to visiting the child for at least two years.
- Will participate in initial and ongoing training and regular supervision.
- Will follow guidance and work within the agreed expectations of the role.
- Lives in or very near to Blackpool.
- Drives confidently and has access to a car (desirable, not essential).
- Volunteers receive ongoing support through meetings and social activities along with the opportunity to meet on a one-to-one basis with the Volunteer Lead.
- Training is offered and further arrangements can be made to meet personal needs
As a minimum a local induction will include:
- Local orientation.
- Local Health and Safety arrangements.
- Thorough discussion of the role profile.
- Introduction to Volunteer Lead.
- Arrangements for training and support.
- Procedure if unable to attend for duties.
Required Age:21 years +
Various locations within Blackpool
Apply for this role
If you are interested in this opportunity, first contact the Service Manager for an informal chat. Following this, you can apply using the button below.
Please note: your application will be declined if no contact is made to the Service Manager before submitting your application.Apply Now