We have recently been awarded just over £18,000 from the Volunteering Wales grant fund which is administered by the Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) on behalf of the Welsh Government to enhance its engagement of young people within the charity.  This grant has been given to increase access, engagement, recognition, and support for young volunteers, with a focus on 16-25 year olds and will be used for a variety of activities.

Although Paul Sartori Hospice at Home is more widely known for its end-of-life support in the community, the charity has a passionate volunteer base who help to support income generation through volunteering at 11 charity shops throughout the county.  There are also more qualified volunteering roles within its clinical areas.  Overall, the volunteer base is mainly made up of over 25 year olds however this project aims to increase the involvement of younger people, between the ages of 16-25.  A new full-time Youth Volunteer Coordinator, Stephen Kendrick, was appointed via the grant-fund and started on Monday 9th August.  Stephen will be working alongside the Volunteer Officer at Paul Sartori, Eleanor Evans, where he will be responsible for coordinating a range of activities to increase access for young people including the creation of new youth-focused roles; reviewing access to youth volunteer opportunities and forming new partnerships with local schools, colleges, youth groups etc which will be key to the project’s success.

Engagement and recognition of young people are also important aspects of the project and there are plans to enhance this through a range of initiatives whilst tapping into the widely respected Pembrokeshire Association of Voluntary Services’ Youth Volunteering Scheme. The project will also explore collaborations with Pembrokeshire College, Digital Community Wales, Menter Iaith Sir Benfro and others.

Stephen joins the team at Paul Sartori Hospice at Home and brings a wealth of experience having previously worked as a teacher at a local primary school.  “I am thrilled to be a part of the Paul Sartori ‘family’ and I am really looking forward to the challenge of this new role and exciting project. I can’t wait to get started and to make steps towards enhancing the access and the support for young people volunteering for Paul Sartori. The project will present an amazing opportunity for the young people in our county to contribute to the ongoing success of the Foundation, whilst simultaneously experiencing the world of work and acquiring important skills beneficial for their futures,” said Stephen.

Flexible volunteering opportunities are available for young people and include volunteering at its local charity shops.  If you are 16-25 years old and interested in volunteering, please get in touch with Stephen at Paul Sartori for an informal chat via email, Stephen@paulsartori.org, office: 01437 763223, or send a message via the Paul Sartori Foundation social media pages.

The charity will be building upon its existing youth volunteering programme and has recognised that with various improvements more opportunities could be available for young people in the local area.  Young people may decide to volunteer for a variety of reasons, whether it is to progress Duke of Edinburgh Awards; part of the progression of a Welsh Baccalaureate or to improve their CV.  Whatever the reason, volunteering can offer young people valuable experience and help them to develop transferable skills which could be useful later in life whether in education or employment.

This successful grant is one of two grants awarded to the charity to support volunteering opportunities during 2021.  Judith Williams, the Grant Development Officer at Paul Sartori Hospice at Home explained “We were successful to Pembrokeshire County Council’s Enhancing Pembrokeshire Grant scheme at the beginning of the year, which centred around improving the infrastructure and supporting volunteers.  This additional opportunity focuses particularly on enhancing opportunities for 16-25 years”.

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