Day 1 training
So I arrived at the training venue on the hottest day of the year so far, to be greeted by a really warm, lovely, lady called Lorna, who is the Senior Volunteer Training Officer at Bliss. She immediately put myself and the group at their ease and we made drinks and got comfortable before the day started.
There were 13 ladies, all with very different life experiences, backgrounds, ages and reasons for getting to the point of being in the training room, but with one common goal..... to make a difference and give something back. Everyone was positive and supportive and it was a very safe environment to learn some new skills.
It is important to note that there were no men on the workshop I was on, not because they are not welcome - just none applied for this particular event. It would be brilliant to see more gents applying and training to be Bliss volunteers - I know my husband would have really benefited from some male support during our experience and I bet there are loads of other Dad's and Grandad's who would appreciate seeing a male Bliss volunteer on the unit. We often forget about the Dad don't we - so much focus is placed on Baby and Mum - but Dad is equally as important!
So we kicked off with getting to know one another, some history about the charity and the volunteer roles available.
Then we started to look, in more depth about change and how sudden change in peoples lives can affect them and their behaviour and how best to support people whilst they are at different stages of 'the change curve'
The activities and exercises were planned and managed to enable us to come to the answers ourselves, through discussion and the guidance of Lorna. I do not think we sat for longer than 45 mins for the whole day.
A lot of thought has been put into ensuring that the volunteers are prepared and armed to sensitively support parents of babies born premature or sick.
It was loads of fun getting to know all of the other ladies and we laughed alot. It could have been an intimidating environment, but between Lorna' inclusive, kind, warm guidance and a fab group of amazing supportive women, it really was a great place to learn.
It was a brilliant, relaxed day, where I leant so much. I came away, excited to learn more on Day 2.......