- My placement log contains some gaps as I have logged my daily experiences of my placement on Edublog and refrenced this in the placement log documents that have been uploaded.
- My feedback from my placement is from Home-Start only as I did not start my appropriate adult training until half way through my Home-Start training. However, I have logged my appropriate adult training on Edublog and included it in my placement attendance log. I have also included on my blog some training I attended on 23/03/19 which I initially thought to be for the appropriate adult team which was infact training for the role of a youth worker. Due to this training taking place after my placement ended I have not added it to my placement hours, or included any information about it in my documents. However, I did think it would be an interesting piece of information to add to the blog as I felt it was important in my career development.
- The Home Start team did not have any additional comments to add to my summative or formative assesments and their feedback was purely verbal. This is due to the fact that they are not officially registed as placement providers and are themselves volunteers. Despite this setback the team still agreed to give me verbal feedback which I was able to write on my summative and fromative assesment. Although the co-ordinators did not give me written feedback I did recieve a card signed by the other volunteers with some positive comments which I will attach to the post.
- On the placement checklist I origionally signed the first few boxes as I thought my placement provider had not signed it. However, on second glance she had signed where appropriate, therefore this is not applicable. However, I have made a note on the bottom of the first page stating, ‘Self signed’. Anywhere on the check list where I have wrote N/A (not applicable) means that I have either not completed the task yet or it does not apply to the work I have been doing. I have also wrote the words, ‘Not yet completed’ anywhere on the checklist relating to any task that does not have to be completed until the formative assessment is due in May.
- I have completed 54 hours of placement so far but my placement will continue until May resulting in a total of 114 hours of work placement.
- I will be attending two additional training sessions with Home-Start in the up and coming weeks which I have documented on my placement attendance log but not on my check list. These will both be completed on the same day from 9:30Am until 9Pm and will include training from weeks two and weeks seven which are currently missing from my Edublog. However, I have made note of this in the following weeks posts.
- Home-Start Final Feedback Scanned Word Doc-1kfk7t2
I attended what I thought was another training day for the appropriate adult team which I did not know about until 2:30 am the night before due to not having enough time to check my emails prior to then. Some of the other volunteers I had already become aquinted with also attended. The day turned out to be a training day to become a youth worker which was not what I thought I would be attending however I decided to stay and take the opportunity to gain some further training and understanding. It was a very emotional day with a focus on child abuse. I got quite emotional as did some of the other volunteers, and the co-ordinators both wipped their eyes at one point during a very emotional descussion the group engaged in. During this discussion I had to take a moment and left the room for five minutes to compose myself as I was unable to contain my emotions and ended up crying. It was a beautiful day, with passionate discussions and horrendous stories and experiences shared between a group of like minded, intelligent people all whom I am certian are going to do great things for the local youths in Plymouth. I decided after leaving the training day that I will be turning up to every training day the team informs be about and also am now taking on the role of a youth worker in the local community. I am feeling rather happy and emotional/ tears of joy at the transformation I have gone through in the past few months. My life is changing and I am ready to help young people and families who are going through what I have been through to come out the other end, and be the light at the end of their tunnel like my youth offending workers, youth workers, social workers and support workers were for me. Although, I am prepared for lots of drama and back lash as I am fully aware of how much of a pain I was and the issues I caused for the people trying to help me when I was facing the issues some of these people are. To conclude my placement log, I am ready, and very exited to start my work… BRING IT ON!
Two Saturdays in Feburary and March I went along to train as an appropriate adult. The days were very long from 9:30 until 16:30 and there was not any exiting tasks to engage in like there was with Home-Start. It was also very different because most of the people there were of a similar age and occupation to myself. Most of the trainees were psychology and criminolgy students, with the acception of one older lady who had moved to Devon to be a Foster carer and do some volunteering on the side and an ex soldier who wanted to get back into work after recovering from PTSD and wanted to give something back to society. I had a great time at these two training days and learned a lot. However, there was a lot to get through and lots of legal knowledge for us to learn. It did feel like I had more pressure in this group to try not to over share information about myself due to the fact that I will be working with people I once was. I will be working with youth offenders. There were times when the co-ordinator went through certian issues we might face when I thought, ‘Oh I did something similar to that when I was 15’. Or I felt the urge to discuss my experience of my perception of youth offending workers and appropriate adults when I was a teenager. I was rather suprised that I got accepted to do this work after the taining finished due to the content on my DBS check. I was rather thrilled. I got on very well with the co-ordinator and the man who runs the youth offending team. The co-ordinator also runs a volunteer festival type venue in Wosestershiere during the summer months, where I have offered to stay for a month to do some summer work. I am quite exited about this role and it was my first choice for placement. At the end of our training we got to have a tour around charles cross police station which was rather amusing to see from the other side. The cells look much smaller and there is also a cell specifically for people who have been arrested on a drugs charge. The cells toilet does not flush into the draines but has a box at the back of it with a black glove stuck to it and unfortunately an officer on duty has to put their hand in there and search through feces for drugs. Although they do get extra pay for it which is good.
15/03/2019: I was on call today and expected to be ready to head to Charles Cross police station where I would be expected to support a detainee. However, I was not called in. If I had been I would have been there from 9-5 and may have had to supported a number of detainees.
Wednesday 3rd of April: A Home-Start Co-ordinator will be visiting my home to help me select a family that I will be the most benefit for and a family who is right for me. This will include the co-ordinator and myself arranging a day to go and visit a family. After this we will visit my selected family for the 1st time together. However, the co-ordinator will leave after half an our and leave me for the duration of the two hour visit to get to know the family. After this I will visit my matched family on my own, once a week for two hours. My time with a family is expected to be 6 months however in some circumstances this can be extended to a year. For example, if we have set a certian goal together which the parent has not yet completed and would like me to support them with.
Wednesday 1st of May: I will be at the Home-Start offices to catch up on week two and week seven of training which I missed due to illness. I will be joining one group during the day who will be on their second day of training. When this commences there will be a session of volunteers doing training in the evening. They will be doing their week seven traing which I am able to join. This is important as it involves the family visit documentation process. This will be a very long day however I am exited to see the co-ordinators again and possibly talk to the new volunteers about my experience training with Home-Start. By then I will already be well into my work with my matched family so it will also be a great opportunity to share my experience working with the new volunteers.
I have decided to further my training with Home-Start South and West Devon by attending training next Wednesday to become a part-time, employeed member of the team. This role will involve more intense support and supervision of a family who may already have social services involvement and be at risk of their children being taken into care. Whereas, the volunteer role requires much less intervention and is more of a support and prevention role. To help families get back on their feet and prevent involvement with social services. Although this role will require more intense intervenion than the volunteer role, I will be giving families shorter periods of support but will be able to do more with them.
Today was the last session of training where we discussed the process a volunteer will have to go through when our work with a family commences. Usually work with a family lasts 6 months however it can be extended to a year. We went through different scenarios we may face during this period and effective ways of dealing with such situations. Myself and another volunteer also acted out a role play scenario which demonstrated how not to behave as a volunteer. To no suprise I chose to act as the innapropriate volunteer which I very much enjoyed. We both had scripts and had a chance to go off and rehearse our lines with I did with great pleasure. It was rather hilarious and we could not stop laughing. We also booked in with a co-ordinator for them to come and visit our homes to help us with our family match. We all took the opportunity to say what types of people we would like to work with and I had mentioned that I would prefere to work with mental health suffers rather than families with abuse due to the fact I felt too emotional in the child abuse and domestic violence sessions. Another volunteer agreed that they thought I would be perfect for families with mental health problems. I also mentioned that I would like to work with male single parents. The second half of the day was very laid back as it was really a goodbye session. However, all of us have decided to return next week for extra training to become employeed, paid family support workers. To end the session we were asked as a group to do something togther to conclude how we felt about our experience training. We decided to create a poem which included two lines about each volunteer. My line was ‘And here comes Georgina with the long words, her personality is quite obsered.’ It really was so funny and obviously I was the one who volunteerd to read in out to the co-ordinators.
Today was the 6th week of training and the focus was on domestic abuse. Supprisingly I felt less emotionally triggered by todays topic and found it very educating. We went through some old laws on domestic abuse which brought to light the inequility of the sexes and gendre stereotypes. There was one particular law in the early 1900’s where men were only allowed to belt there women with sticks that were the size of their thumb and no bigger (the law of thumb) and another law where men were only allowed to beat their women and children between certian hours of the day. Not because the women and children needed to rest but because it was considered impolite and a reason for neighbours to make noise complaints. Even up until 1991 it seemed women were still subject to horrific treatment in the family home. A law was passed in which rape by husbands was disregarded by the courts as it was considered that a woman is agreeing to allow him to have sexual relations with her whenever he wants from the day she takes his hand in marrige.
We engaged in a task where we had to guess the correct answer for statistical occurances in domestic abuse. I recall one of them was that 1 in 3 teenagers report being abused by a partner or something close to that, an extremly high amount of children were in the room or next room when violence was occuring, and I learned that there is less than 300 women’s refuges in the United Kingdom.
The co-ordinators offered lots of statistics about domestic abuse and the term ‘power and contol’ came up quite a lot but the term ‘mental health’ was not used at all to my suprise and it was myself that had to bring up the terms ‘evolution and psychological development’. There was definitly a focus on men abusing women which caused me to remember something I had read in a university text book last year about gendre stereotypes, which was something along the lines of, ‘Results from such and such experiement suggested that females are just as physically abusive as males in relationships but that men are less likely to report it out of shame and women are more likely to be harmed due to men being more physically strong’. What I also took from this is that women will quite often use emotions to manipulate and a man may be terified or feel shame at expressing emotions or admitting vaulnerability. It is quite shocking also that there is very little men’s refuges in The UK and no safe haven for men to escape to. No support at all really and from what I learnt in todays session there isn’t even any significant amount of recognision for male sufferes of domestic abuse (Apart from in the scientific educational community). I found it quite hard to bite my toung during a lot of the discussion. Up until today I found I fitted in much more with these women than my peers but today I realised that it could be possible that people from older generations are more stuck in there mindsets and less open to new information. It felt like a which hunt at times against men who really had no control over the society they were brought up in. However, despite me feeling sympathy for all men of the human race, at times I did notice and feel the immense lack of equality of the sexes and it is apparent that women seem to have a lot less entitlement than men. I recall a documentary on Netflix called ‘Explained’ and I recommend it to anyone who’s mind is wondering and is bored one Sunday afternoon. Each episode is a 20 minute long educational video on topics people really should but often don’t understand enough about in 2019. One episode discussed equal pay for the sexes and it was shocking to learn that some mothers work full time and mother full time but get less pay than there husbands and careers progress at a much slower rate.
I did learn a lot in today’s session and I realise that it isn’t just people of African decent that were enslaved by the white man for a large part of human history but anyone who was not a white man, or white rich man was not really considered human at all but considered property. It is very sad but what I took from todays session and from experiences outside of my training is that the control rich white men have on the rest of the world is slipping but it is important for the rest of society to not slip into the old mind trick of treating someone badly because they have treated you badly. We must lead by example and treat people the way we want to be treated in order to put a stop to the destrucive and abusive cycles of human history. I think America as a perfect example of how not to recover from pain. In my opinion it is the most racist country in the wolrd atleast in the way the American society is potrayed in the media. When ever there is a murder it is emphasised what colour skin the person had or what the profession of the person was. There is this constant right wing left wing attitued, or in the case of America black wing white wing attitude. I noticed this on Facebook before I left the site. People from America would get into arguments on public media posts and comments would include vile insults about the colour of the other persons skin or blaming the other ‘race’, often completly innapropriate for the context of the origional post. We really need to learn from America as a whole world and look back on our history and go ‘Ahh look what we did there that was bad, how can we not do those things again’. Instead I’m afraid that our contry could possibly be at the begining of an era quite like America’s with the white male gradually becoming vilified by society for atrocities commited by their ancersorts they likely have no knowldge of. I was once told by an ‘African American’ on Facebook (Likely someone who had never even been to Africa but desperate to ware their ingroup lable) that I should apologise to them for what my ancestors did to them. Which was an extremly uneducated thing to say as my ancestors were actually victims of the haulocast. Vise versas, I don’t expect every Deutch person I meet to apologise to me for something some stranger put my grandparents through. What I can do is not treat people like that and expect apologies there and then in the moment for peoples behaviour. As a society we need to stop blaming people NOW for things that happened in the past and find an educated and compassionate way to move foward from our pain and abuse and be consious to treat others as ‘thous’ and not ‘its’. Blaming a man today for what a different man yesterday did is just as objectifying as racism and domestic abuse.
Reflection of todays blog: So much for feeling less emotionally attached to the subject this week. Reading this post back to myself also brought to mind the ever changing, what I consider ingroup labels of sexuality. As I read the part where I wrote the words ‘blaming the other race’. I thought ‘But were are all one F’n race’. We are all a family, THIS IS OUR PLANET AND WE ARE SUPPOSED TO BE ONE INGROUP!! I hope that all the new gendre labels and sexuality labels help prevent an attitude like Amerca’s devloping in our contry towards todays men. I mean if there is no gendre to blame for domestic violence then we will hopefully all be forced into taking responsibility, or all refute any responsibility at all which would be a dismissive but safer way of leaving our history as a society in the past.
I would also like to note that as I progress though university I am noticing massive gaps in societies knowledge and willingness to understand and almost a ‘gap market’ for psychology.
Today was my second week of training to be a family support worker but the 3rd week for everyone else as I had to have a week off.
This weeks training was on stereotypes and prejudice behaviours. The aim of the training was to help the co-ordinators learn if any of the volunteers did have any prejudice beliefs towards any type people or lifestyle choices and for the volunteers to learn about acceptable and unacceptable behaviours in the house. We learnt in which scenarios it would be appropriate to take a parent aside and discuss our concerns and when it would not be appropriate to do so. We engaged in several group activities aimed at increasing our understanding of acceptable behaviours in the family home and to help us understand our own limitations as volunteers caused by our own experiences and perspectives.
We engaged in about half a dozen activities overall but I will discuss just one of them today.
One of the activities required us to work in groups where we were given a stack of cards that had scenarios written on them. We were instructed to place the card far away, out of the group circle if we thought it was an unacceptable opinion, or in the middle of the group circle if we thought it was acceptable. Senarios included sayings such as; ‘It is not acceptable for a five year olf boy to play with girl toys because he may turn out to be gay and it is okay to hit your own child’. These were the two that stood out most for me and I thought the first one was quite funny as when I was about seven years old all I ever wanted to do was dress as a boy and play with my baskateball hoop. Between the two groups we discussed ‘The Gendre Issue’ but could not quite get our heads round why it had become such an issue. Our group agreed that it was prejudice to have such a belief and placed the card far out of the circle. The senario about smacking your own child caused quite a stir in the discussion as I was adamant that you should never ever harm a child. I used the example, ‘If your friend did not do something you wanted them too would you slap them in the face? Then why would you slap a defensless child who has less understanding than your adult friend?’ However, some of the women thought it was okay to smack your child in certian circumstances. Infact to my suprise most of them did.
After this activity there seemed to be quite a comotion between the other psychology student and the co-orindators. She did not come back after this and it had turned out she had left the course due do predjudice beliefs about child abuse. In other countries it is still acceptable to physically abuse children and she was not in agreement of reporting any parents if she found out that they had physically harmed their children. This was sad for me because I really got on with her and she was actually my favuorite person in the group as we both studied psychology so we had a common ground straight away.
Overall, I had a really good time and feel accepted into the group. I feel I really fit in with the other volunteers and we have such a laugh together. I hope we all stay in contact after the training has finished.
On Wednesday the 23rd of January I Started training with Home-Start South and West Devon to be a family support worker. Training starts at 9:30 and finishes at 14:30 meaning I will complete 6 hours of training every week for 5 weeks, a total of 35 hours training with Home-Start. I will not be attending week two of the training.
The organisation offers support and practical help to families with young children under the age of 5. Home-Start helps families who are under stress and often act as an intervention to help support families who are at risk of their children being placed on the at risk register or child in need register. As a Home-Start volunteer I will be expected to be able to work with families with a range of problems such as learning difficulties, drug and alcohol abuse, mental health problems and more than often with survivors of domestic abuse. However, after my training has commenced Home-Start will pair me with a family that they think I will be best suited too and able to support. Despite Home-Start usually only accepting volunteers who are mothers or fathers, they agreed to have me as a volunteer due to the fact that I am familiar with some of the processes a large portion of their families are going through.
The first day of training was very good and everyone got on well. The first day was an introductory day where everyone got to know eachother. We did a task where we had to tell the person next to us one lie and one truth, some of them were quite funny.
I was quite concerned that I would possibly get treated differently because I am the youngest and not a mother but the whole group really gets along great. Their is a variety of people from many different backgrounds. Women who have retired, one lady from The Carribean who is a PHD Psychology student, a few women who are training with Home-Start to help get back into work after having some children and even a retired nurse.
Overall, the first day went great. I was really exited and proud that I had been accepted by Home-Start as I have not had much luck with employment. I dressed really smart on my first day and went out and purchased some new smart trousers and shoes. If the rest of the training goes as good as day one I will be very pleased.