Songs & Smiles Group Welcomer (volunteer)
Meet and greet everyone with a smile and bring fun and happiness to children, parents and care home residents at our singing and social group
About Songs & Smiles
Songs & Smiles is an intergenerational event that unites babies/toddlers, their parents/guardians and care home residents. It brings an incredible amount of joy to the residents, many of whom are unable to get out and about and can often feel isolated.
It also fulfils a vital role by introducing children to a generation that they might not otherwise regularly come into contact with. And parents/guardians benefit too, by meeting new friends and knowing they're making a positive impact in their community - all whilst having lots of fun
The group sings nursery rhymes and ‘golden oldies’ along to backing tracks for half an hour, accompanied by tambourines, shakers and other instruments, as well as sensory equipment like a bubble machine. Afterwards we have Meet & Mingle time, where everyone can get to know each other over toys, drinks and a tasty biscuit or two.
Songs & Smiles is run by The Together Project, a not-for-profit Community Interest Company. You can read more about the sessions here.
what you'll be doing
You’ll be the person who welcomes parents/guardians and children, collects their £1 entry fee and helps things run smoothly. You’ll be writing out name badges so everyone can get to know each other, making sure everyone has a musical instrument, delighting young and old with the bubble machine and more!
Then afterwards you’ll be chatting with residents, parents/guardians and children. You’ll be partnered with a Songs & Smiles Group Leader, who’ll be there to lead the singing. You’ll also be responsible for paying the takings into a local HSBC bank branch each fortnight.
In a wider sense, you’ll be creating happiness for lots of people: many residents tell us it’s the highlight of their week.
What we’re looking for
We’re looking for an enthusiastic, cheerful and welcoming person who’s happy to help. No previous experience is required.
This role would greatly suit a student, a retired person or perhaps someone who is currently out of work or works part-time and has a few hours to spare. Some of our volunteers are parents who bring their young children with them.
Due to the nature of the role, we need someone who is comfortable around both very young children and elderly people, some of whom may have conditions such as dementia. Some of the homes we work with will require a DBS check for volunteers.
New skills and experiences
References provided after six months
Fun and sociability
Health and social care-related work experience
Meeting different people from your local community
Knowing you’ve made a real difference to people’s lives
location & commitment
You’ll be helping to run a one hour session, plus set-up and pack-down time, once a week or once a fortnight on a weekday at a care home.
We are currently looking for volunteers to start in September onwards in north and north east London. Vacancies include Chingford, Leyton (Bakers Arms), Forest Gate and Canning Town, but we have a number of other locations planned over the coming months. Let us know when you're available, your location and the distance you're willing to travel and we'll do our best to match you to a suitable session.
You will be asked to attend a three hour training course before starting the role. This will include a Dementia Friends Information Session, giving you the opportunity to learn a little more about what it’s like to live with dementia.
Reasonable travel expenses will be reimbursed if agreed in advance.