CALA practitioner Elizabeth Reid presented with award by Drew Hendry MSP

Congratulations to Elizabeth Reid, Assistant Childcare Practitioner at Junior World in Nairn. Elizabeth recently received a Saltire Ascent Award for completing over 500 hours of voluntary work within her local community! Elizabeth has also been selected as a Saltire Ambassador by Signpost Inverness and Nairn. 

Elizabeth expanded on her love of volunteering to us: 

“It all started from a hobby of mine, which was tennis. I started helping my coach teach younger children how to play. Shortly after I found out about Saltire, so I quickly signed up and ever since have been gaining hours. When I was at school, my friends started volunteering at a group called BIG. I was intrigued to find out more about it, so a couple of weeks later I started attending with them and I am so pleased I did.”

“Just over 4 years later I am still helping the club! I have developed friendships with the attendees – most of whom have been coming since the start, like me. Since leaving school just over two years ago, I have been returning to Nairn Academy twice a week to tutor the Steel Band. I am proud of the groups I have helped develop. It is great saying you help at a group but it’s even better when you love what you do.”


The award was presented to Elizabeth by Drew Hendry MP at the Signpost AGM held in Nairn. Here he is on Facebook offering his congratulations to the volunteers: 

Care and Learning Alliance would like to congratulate Elizabeth for her fantastic dedication to making her local community a better place. 

Celebrating CALA’s volunteers: Aga, Margaret, Nikki and Shona

All week we have been celebrating the fantastic contribution that CALA volunteers make to their local communities. In this blog post, we focus on some of our amazing Family Support volunteers.

Volunteer Profile: Aga Rudak

“My name is Aga and I am a busy mother of two bright and lovable children. I have been volunteering with CALA Family First since Autumn 2014.”

“I started helping with a local playgroup and then working with families. Volunteering gives me the possibility to develop my professional path and also a lot of satisfaction. This kind of satisfaction is priceless. I am grateful for the opportunity to meet many people and make someone’s life better.”

Volunteer Profile: Shona Dreghorn

“I started volunteering for CALA so that I could try and make a little bit of difference to the lives of people who require some family support. I now have free time so wanted to put it to good use and it’s a great feeling knowing I can use it to help others out at a difficult time. I also decided to do it to give something back to a service I once used and was really grateful for.  I love doing the volunteering and will continue to keep doing it for as long as possible.”
 
To all of CALA’s volunteers, past and present, Care and Learning Alliance would like to say a big thank you for giving up your time to help make a real difference to the lives of children and families across Highland. 
 
Interested in volunteering for CALA? Please see our website for more information: www.careandlearningalliance.co.uk or contact our main office on 01463 222 569 

Celebrating our Volunteers

FF-volunteers

Volunteers’ Week is an annual event, dedicated to celebrating the work of volunteers up and down the country. Moira has been in touch to remind us of some of the incredible work being done by our Family First volunteers. Their work can make a real difference to parents, lightening their load and providing children with a variety of new experiences. Click here to learn more about volunteering with Family First.

Here is Moira to explain more:

It’s good to remember how crucial our volunteers are to the work of Family First. Each volunteer gives an average of three hours a week to support a family or help out at a group. That can mean the difference between an exhausted Mum getting a break or not, or a child getting an experience they would otherwise miss out on. It also means we can offer a more varied range of activities at our groups, drawing on the skill and experience of people from all sorts of different backgrounds.

We are lucky enough to have four volunteers working with South Skye and Lochalsh Family First at the moment. Here they are, Julie, Lynne and our two Rosies, pictured “in action” at Kyleakin Family First, which now incorporates the local Baby Group which would otherwise have had to close down.

Why do they do it? When asked, they said it was rewarding to build up a relationship with the children and their parents through visiting them at home or preparing an activity for the group which they could see was fun for the parents to do with their children.

One volunteer commented, “It was lovely to see a family grow up and be involved in some small way and follow their progress and know you had helped a little bit. No real drawbacks except perhaps having to entertain small children in the rain!”