More opportunities for young people to volunteer at SLaM

Sarah Rodway-Swanson recently joined the Trust as Young Person’s Volunteer Coordinator. Here she talks about boosting opportunities for young people to find out about mental health careers:

Sarah Cropped 2

"I graduated this year with a psychology and anthropology degree - this is my first job. I’ve always been really interested in mental health and volunteered at an older adults’ ward when I was at uni in Scotland. I really enjoyed it and gained a lot of experience.

"My role is to encourage young people aged 16-22 to volunteer at the Trust. For the first time, we are giving 16 and 17 year olds opportunities to volunteer. Through volunteering at SLaM young people can develop new skills and find out about our services and careers in the sector.

"There are lots of roles available - for example, as an activity coordinator they could be running a pool competition or arts and crafts sessions for service users. There will also be opportunities to assist occupational therapists at the Trust. Young people could also take up befriending roles and help service users to access activities in the community such as museums and lunch clubs.

"We want to to have a range of opportunities for both young people in education and those who aren't in education or employment, showing them the wide variety of things you can do.

"I have started visiting schools, colleges and youth groups to tell them about volunteering opportunities at SLaM. The enthusiasm is brilliant - it’s very encouraging that this is something a lot of people want to do and mental health is at the forefront of their minds.

"We are only the mental health trust in the national #iwill campaign for youth volunteering. This campaign is supported by the Pears Foundation, the National Lottery Fund and Maudsley Charity."

Find out more and apply for the programme.

For more information, email Sarah.Rodway-Swanson@slam.nhs.uk.

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