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Befriending Co-Ordinator

Job Opportunities | Colchester, Essex, United Kingdom | Full Time

Job Description

About Age Concern Colchester & North East Essex

Age Concern Colchester & North East Essex is a charitable organisation that looks after the welfare of individuals of 60 years+ to support making life better in later years. Key ways that we do this are: -

- To provide support in identifying benefit applications and support in completion - £1.3m per year in benefits delivered
- A befriending service matching individuals with the needs of the older generation - we have 350+ people befriended
- Developing Volunteering in the Charity and to benefit our Community
- Connecting people in later years through The Veranda / HILL Project with clubs, activities and interest groups

The charity has gone through significant growth over the last couple of years and is now an independent charity but reaches people across Colchester, Witham and North East Essex. We are looking for a befriending coordinator to lead activity in Colchester whilst remaining supportive to colleagues in a team-based approach.

What do we offer?

Age Concern is a friendly and enjoyable place to work. We work hard but also enjoy some downtime together. Due to the nature of our work this is essential because we all have tougher days and need to be there to work through these days when they happen.

The organisation is growing from one site to four sites and we are developing the work of the charity. It is an exciting time to be a part of what we are doing and this opportunity is about genuinely making a big difference to people. The team have great pride in what they do, who we help and how we transform lives.

Reasonable expenses and mileage are covered. As a small but growing charity we do not have an extensive benefits list that you find in bigger corporates but we do run a pension scheme, holidays are 29 days inclusive of bank holidays, day Birthday day off and office closure over the Christmas period for team members that cover those days.

We do offer excellent coaching and support from both colleagues and the senior team. We appreciate that starting an operation from the outset can be a challenge. The good news is that we have established structures that allow us to support getting things locally up and off the ground. 

There is potential for career development and also the leadership team is dynamic and we enjoy exploring new ideas and ways to do things to grow the charity. 

What are we looking for?

Befriending Activities

- Receiving referrals from a variety of sources on individuals who are lonely and socially isolated
- Recording information on Salesforce for Charities (full training provided)
- Meeting individuals in the home, understanding their needs and identifying who they would connect well with
- Working with a pool of volunteers to connect lonely individuals with befrienders considering location and shared interests
- Complete surveys with both individuals so we can understand their current situation
- Make regular contact with befrienders and those they befriend to ensure both parties are happy completing reviews
- Maintain good records on the CRM system so we have information to understand activity
- Actively look for opportunities to encourage individuals to join clubs local to them (HILL Project)
- If the query is outside our remit signpost to relevant charities / agencies

Your Qualities

- You will need to be outgoing, confident and able to juggle a range of priorities well
- The amount of work on Word, Computer Systems and general admin is heavy so proficiency is essential
- The office is a new start-up so whilst we will increase employees and volunteers in the future a self-starter is essential as is the ability to work autonomously and to actively develop the befriending department
- Able to understand the confidential nature of our work and put in place relevant safeguarding procedures
- You will have a genuine desire to make a difference to people in very challenging personal circumstances

Practical Considerations

- All our staff and volunteers go through the DBS process and thorough vetting (no costs)
- The role involves a high degree of work on a PC
- Some people love being on the phone and meeting new people. If so this role is for you and we look forward to speaking. If you don't enjoy contact with people and aren't personable we do need this as essential for the role.
- You will need to have a car, licence and before joining business class insurance. Some training will need to be completed at Colchester and travel will be across Tendring District so a comfort with driving is important
- Often we deal with people who are upset and distressed. We need an individual who is a calming influence on others and can keep a cool head, think logically and be prepared to find support before jumping to a resolution

The role is 32.5 between the hours of 8.30am - 5pm Mon - Fri.

The role is offered for a three-year fixed-term contract although we are looking at the work longer-term.

Finally, team is really important to us. Whilst the team will develop over time as the first person in to the local office there is an expectation that additional members will be welcomed, supported and that a strong team bond will develop. You will be pivotal to developing a positive culture in the office for those we serve, other charities and the wider team as we hire new people in. If you like a new challenge and are a good fit for the above apply today to join us at Age Concern.