Recruiting, training, deploying and supporting volunteers
A message for Care Homes from Care Home Volunteers
We know there are so many excellent care homes that show great compassion and consideration in looking after their residents. However, care homes are always very busy places and, even in the best ones, we know that carers cannot spend periods of time in conversation with individual residents, particularly those who are not able to join in organised activities.
Volunteers are ideally placed to provide an additional resource to give friendship, conversation and companionship to residents.
Why volunteering in care homes
can be challenging
How CHV can help
Our agreement with care homes
Unlike in hospices and hospitals, volunteers are not widely found in care homes. We have researched and identified the main obstacles to volunteering in care homes;
• The difficulty in recruiting suitable volunteers
• Vetting and administration problems
• The responsibility of day to day management of the work of volunteers
• The need for of understanding and awareness by volunteers of the requirements and difficulties of residents
• The extra duty placed on care staff by volunteers
• The possibility of tension between carers and volunteers
• The risk that volunteers may unwittingly try to carry out inappropriate functions
• The consistency of support that volunteers can give
• The lack of a tradition or culture of volunteering in care homes.
Care Home Volunteers has designed a recruitment, training and support programme for volunteers which overcomes these challenges.
CHV will recruit, train and support our volunteers for your care home. It has sought advice widely in the care sector in the drawing up of these plans, and consulted extensively on their content, structure, feasibility, achievability and acceptability. You can be assured that our volunteers are reliable, well-prepared and enthusiastic about their role.
Our preparation and support for volunteers covering such matters as
• The volunteer’s role
• Understanding the Care Home model of care
• Dementia Awareness
• Infection control
• Communicating with people with dementia
• Communicating with people experiencing sensory loss
We see our contribution to your work as an equal partnership. Our partner care homes are asked to sign an agreement with us covering matters including recruitment, interviews and DBS checks for volunteers, our ongoing support, insurance for volunteers, induction and orientation to your care home and our respective responsibilities in the way our volunteers carry out their roles.
Please contact our volunteer coordinator to see a copy of the Care Home Agreement.