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11th November 2015

Volunteers’ importance to probation

by Eve Croft, CGM CRC’s volunteer coordinator

MORE than 150 volunteer mentors work across Cheshire and Greater Manchester, carrying out a range of tasks including supporting the delivery of programmes, helping service users access benefits, housing, education and employment and supporting people as they build their social network.

Mentors are an enthusiastic and hard-working group, and CGM CRC and service users benefit from their input.

In the case of Matthew, he has completely turned his life around and has worked in many different areas of probation. He has made a vast difference to the lives of many of our offenders through his one-to-one work, his listening skills and his patience.

Matthew illustrates how mentors can have a fantastic impact, especially for those whom have very little support other than the associates which they are trying to disassociate. Matthew volunteers for the CGM CRC for the same reason as most undergraduate students, however he is able where appropriate to use his experience to engage our most hard to reach and resistant offenders. Matthew has spoken to staff and it was inspirational to hear him talk about his experiences.

Three former volunteer mentors have been successful in gaining fix term contracts with CGM CRC over the last couple of months, with many more having previously been successful. I am sure more will add to this impressive list, demonstrating how beneficial the scheme is for those who wish to gain this essential experience before beginning a career.

I’m proud of the volunteer mentors, the work they undertake, the benefits they bring to the organisation, and the benefits the volunteers themselves experience. It is a a win-win situation. To find out more about volunteering, click this link.