OPP OF THE DAY: Lead Support Volunteer, The Multiple Sclerosis Society – Dudley District Branch

MS support teams aim to empower people affected by MS through giving information about MS, ms societyemotional support and facilitating access to available services and support. The team is co-ordinated by the Lead Support Volunteer.

As the Lead Support Volunteer you will co-ordinate and lead the MS Support team to provide quality support to local people affected by MS. You will also link the MS support team with their local member of staff who may work with you to develop local support services.

What you could be doing
– Support, lead and co-ordinate the work of the MS support team
– Engage with the branch committee about MS support work and let them know what the team are doing, for instance by attending branch committee meetings, liaising with the branch chair and making reports

What the MS Support Team could be doing
– Ensure that the MS support work undertaken meets the needs of the branch
– Develop collaborative relationships with health and social care professionals
– Develop collaborative relationships with and give support to local MS information points
– Raise awareness of the needs of people affected by MS and the Society’s services
– Develop a basic knowledge of statutory services and benefits and refer people on
– Receive and distribute MS Society information booklets
– Maintain an up-to-date a list of relevant local services for people affected by MS, and distribute it to other members of the team and through the branch newsletter
– Ensure that the branch/group has a contact phone line and there is a contact person
– Ensure that grants are dealt with effectively
– Communicate effectively with other members of the team
– Build relationships with the local member of staff, for example attending support forums

What skills, experience and abilities you need
– Good listening and communication skills and good interpersonal skills
– Ability to support other volunteers as a leader of the team and delegate tasks
– Ability to recognise limitations of role and own boundaries within that
– Ability to adopt an objective rather than a personal perspective
– Ability to recognise and respect a diversity of views, attitudes and lifestyles
– Ability to see someone’s feelings and experiences from their perspective (empathy)
– Ability to maintain confidentiality
– Confident using Microsoft Office, the internet and email

What the MS Society can offer you
– An opportunity to develop new skills and build on existing ones
– A chance to meet new people and be part of a supportive and friendly team
– Induction pack, toolkit and support from your chair and local member of staff
– Two days of training to support you in your role as well as the opportunity to attend forums to share ideas and discuss common issues with other Support Volunteers
– Additional training to support with the role
– We will reimburse ‘out of pocket’ expenses – such as lunch and travel – in line with the MS Society’s expenses policy

What else you need to know about the role
Code of conduct – Our code of conduct outlines the values we uphold in everything we do. Everybody involved in the MS Society, including staff and volunteers, must take responsibility for following the code of conduct

Recruitment process – You will be asked to attend an informal chat to talk about your skills and experiences and learn more about the role

Disclosure check – You will be asked to undergo a disclosure check as this role involves supporting vulnerable people

Support and Development – You will be asked to attend and complete both sessions of the training programme

Young people and this role – You must be over the age of 18 to take on this role

Location – You will be volunteering from home and out and about in your local community

How much time this will take
The time commitment can vary depending on location and we can be flexible about the days and hours you volunteer. We understand that you have other commitments and will work around you

FOR MORE INFO OR TO APPLY please contact:

Lyndsay Smith
Email: Lyndsay.Smith@mssociety.org.uk

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