Community Partner – Harris Academy

Volunteering Works partners with Harris Academy to provide professional volunteers to mentor students with their numeracy skills.

Nomso Oranu, Business Mentoring Lead from the Academy shared his thoughts on partnering with us. 

Can you tell us a bit about the partnership with Volunteering Works?
We’ve been working with Volunteering Works for a while now, I’ve personally been involved since 2019. The volunteers provide one-to-one mentoring and deliver numeracy content based on topics identified by the students. This is currently run remotely but pre-covid this had been done face-to-face on-site. We hope for this to continue again soon.  

Volunteering Works also organised career and employability workshops for us with corporate employee volunteers. The workshops were great and enabled our students to get a feel for real world experiences. It gives students a chance to broaden their horizons, giving them the opportunity to engage with external professionals to give an insight in to the world of work.  

How has corporate volunteering benefited you as a community partner?

We have seen so many benefits from the corporate volunteering programme.  What I notice is that the girls who engage with mentoring become more connected with the school overall. Often they sign up because they have identified an area within numeracy where they need additional help, but we often find the employee volunteers engage with them on numeracy and wider study skills, organisation, and other work-related matters. 

It has been fantastic to see the transition in the students from the beginning to the end especially if they consistently engage with their mentor’s week in, week out… you do see the transition and they take that learning back to their classes which is great. 

What’s it been like working with Volunteering Works?

We have developed an outstanding relationship with Volunteering Matters and Volunteering Works, Engagement Manager, Ines, has been great at screening the volunteers, recruiting and training them so that when they onboard to our programme the transition is pretty much seamless. To the point where the impression given is that they have worked in schools previously, when often they haven’t. The processing behind the scenes and identifying the appropriate volunteers is done so well. In a way that we just couldn’t do. When the volunteers join us they can then focus on developing and supporting our girls rather than school organisational matters.  

The work that Volunteering Works does enables us to receive high quality and engaged volunteers who understand the dynamics in schools and who are therefore able to work quickly and effectively with our students. 

The volunteers provide an alternative perspective which is always useful. We do an outstanding job of teaching and educating, whereas the volunteers are individuals from a variety of backgrounds who have knowledge and experience in areas that our girls often don’t have, so what they bring supplements what we do. This works really well! 

What are the benefits of working with the partners via Volunteering Works?

The benefit of workplace learning and collaborating with external partners is widely recognised; we have seen how this partnership benefits both the school, our students, and the volunteers; it really is a ‘win-win’ for all involved. 

On a personal level, I’ve enjoyed working with Volunteering Works on the programme.

The support provided is superb! The benefits of engaging with the numeracy coaches is recognised and highly valued in our school; we look forward to building this ongoing relationship.   

Get in touch to find out more about how we can help your corporate volunteering programme.

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