Making A Difference Volunteer Update

Would you like to support people by providing comprehensive advice and resources surrounding home energy? We are looking for volunteers to help deliver this information to members of the local community and offer some additional support during the cost-of-living crisis. If you think you would like to give it a go but want to learn more about it all first, don’t worry, we are offering training to anyone that is interested in becoming involved with the project. If you would like to become an energy agent, please get in touch by emailing us at welcome@communities1st.org.uk or call us on 01727649970.

We run our popular Computers and a Cuppa sessions at several venues in Hertsmere with the help of some of our dedicated volunteers known as Digital Champions. This is a service for those who need help using technology. Our volunteers can help with many things, such as setting up email addresses, online shopping orders, online banking and health appointments. This is a drop-in service open to members of the public. There's no need to book in advance and no charge for the service.
As more services are delivered online these seemingly small bits of help are crucial to allowing people to access essential resources. If you have a good understanding of technology and want to share your knowledge with those who need support, volunteer as a Digital Champion! Being able to use technology with confidence can help to reduce social isolation. If you are keen to share your knowledge with others, please contact us by emailing volunteering@communities1st.org.uk or call us on 01727649970.

Don't forget to check out the Action For Happiness 'Friendly February' calendar for inspiration as to how you can be even friendlier this month! 

All the best,  

 

Stephen Craker

Chief Executive

Meet Stephen Craker
Receive training to become an Energy Agent! 
   Help deliver energy advice in your local community!

With the months getting colder, why not come along to support the members of your local community at our creative cafés/community spaces. Apart from welcoming visitors and helping with activities this year we also want volunteers to be able to become Energy Agents. In this role you will be able to help people make informed decisions about their energy usage, conserving energy and safety.

If you would enjoy delivering this helpful advice to people in your community who need it, then please get in touch with a member of the team or sign up on your dashboard. You will be given full training and resources to help you in this role. 

Our Creative Café / Community Spaces are available across Hertfordshire and every week from Monday to Friday in Hertsmere. Find out which one is closest to you below:

  • Mondays: Windsor Hall Community Centre, Borehamwood from 10.30am - 2.30pm.
  • Tuesdays: Phillimore Community Centre, Radlett from 12pm - 4pm.
  • Wednesdays: Aberford Community Centre, Borehamwood from 1pm - 4pm.
  • Thursdays: Farriers Way Community Centre, Borehamwood from 10am - 2pm.
  • Fridays: Organ Hall Community Centre, Borehamwood from 10am - 2pm.

If you feel that this is the volunteering opportunity for you, please contact us by emailing us at welcome@communities1st.org.uk or call us on 01727649970 or 01727649980.

  Grow Your Own Sunshine - Feeling Good Week!
 It's not too late to come along to our final workshop.
 
 

The Regrown project is running within feel good week. It's a project that looks at the benefits of spending time outdoors, and how it can have a positive effect on an individual’s mental health and wellbeing. It is also a project looking to encourage children of different ages to spend more time outside! We will be running workshops from our community centres on the below mentioned dates which will include fun and educational activities for local children. Some of these activities will revolve around gardening, planting seeds and many more! There will also be refreshments available.

If you feel like you would like to spend a bit more time outdoors yourself, and support the project as a volunteer, please feel free to let us know, we would love to see you there!

 

Friday 9th February – Organ Hall Community Centre, 37 Bairstow Close, Borehamwood, WD6 4TB. 3pm to 5pm
Register here.

If you would like to come along, please let us know by getting in touch on 01727649980 or email us at welcome@communities1st.org.uk

Annual Client Survey 2024

With another year passed, it is time for our annual survey for clients. This survey allows us to check in with our clients, as well as monitor feedback which we can then use to inform and improve our services. 

In order to complete this survey, we need some help calling everyone. If you have some spare time, and would be happy to call some clients and conduct a short survey with them, please give us a call on 01727 649900 or email us

We will give you all the training you need for this role. This activity would need to be completed in our main office (1st Floor, Ver House, Park Estate, Frogmore, St. Albans, AL2 2WH), and we will have a full desk set up and landline for you to use.

You will be surrounded by friendly staff members who will be more than happy to support you or answer any questions you have. Just drop us a call now if you would like to know more!

Become a Digital Champion!

Using technology for a lot of us is a part of our every day lives and is something that we don't even really think about. For others, using technology can be really difficult and even intimidating at times! If you feel that you know your way around technology enough to help someone in your local community feel more confident when they use it, why not become a Digital Champion? 

The Digital inclusion project works hard to provide members of the community with confidence when using technology and give them access to the resources that technology and the internet has to offer. Any donations of technology that you no longer want or use such as mobile phones, laptops and computers are very much appreciated for these projects. If you would like to make a donation please contact us by emailing volunteering@communities1st.org.uk or call us on 01727649970.

Friendly February 2024

You can download the Friendly February  2024 Calendar here.

Become a Bus Buddy Today!
 
 

You may have seen our Communities 1st Shopper Buses driving around your local area and thought that you would like to be involved! If you don't want to sit behind the wheel but you do want to come along with us, why not become a bus buddy? 

As a Bus Buddy you will be able to support those who use the bus by helping them carry their shopping as well as keeping them company and having a friendly chat along the way. 

To become a Bus Buddy or find out more please email us at travel@communities1st.org.uk or call us on 01727649980.

Save on local Arriva Busses.
 
 

Arriva and Communities 1st have joined together to offer savings on local Arriva bus travel. The service is open to everyone using the services and member organisations. The Travel Club lets you pay less for your travel by monthly direct debit. Your ticket doesn't just provide you with reduced bus travel costs to-and-from work, you'll get unlimited travel on any Arriva bus in your selected travel zone each month, so you can get out and about on your days off toom all for no additional cost. 

What are the benefits? 
You will never lose your ticket again! You can choose to have your ticket on your mobile phone with the Arriva UK Bus app. 
Up to 2 children travel free with the ticket holder on weekends and bank holidays, for paper ticket holders only. 
You will have unlimited bus travel every month in the zone(s)of your choice. 
There is no minimum contract and you can join or leave whenever you like with no penalty. You are also able to pay easily via direct debit. By joining you could save up to 20% on bus travel! If you would like to join or find out more you can do so by clicking here. You can also email us at talktus@arriva.co.uk

Let Volunteering Roles Come to You!

Communities 1st is launching Let’s Give, a new service for volunteers. You will be able to create your own space on our website, so that organisations can find out more about you and reach out regarding their volunteering roles.

You won’t need to display any personal contact information as we will do all the brokerage, so we will put you in touch with the given organisation.

It’s a great way to showcase your skills and experience to local community groups and can help match you with a role where you can make a real difference.

You can do this by logging into your dashboard and editing your Volunteer Centre profile – scroll down to the section on External Volunteer Opportunities.

Get in Touch
How to Claim Expenses  

New Volunteer Expenses Claim Form

We have a new volunteer expense request form. If you don't have it, please email us and we will send it to you.

For Shopping Delivery and Prescription Collection Expenses

  • To claim expenses, please sign up to our dashboard and upload your expenses there. Click here to create a login using the same email address that you originally signed up with. You will then see a list of your completed and pending activities.
  • Please submit expense claims the same week that you carried out your shop, and if appropriate, provide a photo of your receipt. If an expense is not claimed in a timely manner it can lead to a client going into arrears, which can cause them stress and confusion. We appreciate your help with this.
  • If this is your first shop, you will first need to email us your bank details  so you can be reimbursed.

For Drivers, Litter Pickers and Other Roles' Expenses

  • You will have been sent an expense claim form when you confirmed your job. To claim your expenses, please complete this and return it to the sender.