City Lit Blog

Celebrating our volunteers

Story added 6th Jun 2017

Speech therapy volunteers

City Lit held a special event yesterday to celebrate the work of all our dedicated volunteers across the college network. Our volunteers are often unsung heroes in terms of the inspirational impact they have supporting the thousands of students who come through our doors every year.

Here, we profile just some of the important work they carry out across different departments throughout the year…

English and maths

Volunteers have proved invaluable in our English and maths classes. Although every effort is made to place learners on courses with others of the same level, our volunteers provide the additional guidance and support when needed for all students to successfully achieve their goals. With volunteers in the classroom, more learners are given individual support and there is less of a need for everyone to work at the same pace on the same activities, thus enhancing the learning process.

Since our learners may be returning to the study of English and maths after a long time (perhaps not studying it since they left school), or may not have done very well in English and maths when they were in school, choosing to return to the classroom can be intimidating.

Having volunteers in the classroom makes for a much warmer and more supportive atmosphere for learners. Our volunteers have played a crucial role in supporting students on their learning journey since they can help make the class less “teacher-centred” and provide much-needed islands of support around the room where learners can get extra guidance and support.

Speech therapy

We also have a number of speech therapy volunteers who we would like to thank for their help over the last year in assisting students attending speech therapy classes at City Lit. These include students who stammer, students with aphasia and students wanting to train as speech and language therapists.

They include former students who have attended courses at City Lit to help with their stammer who return, in their own time, to talk to fellow students who stammer, to provide encouragement and to share their experiences of what helped them, as well as talking to students on our professional training courses. This helps enrich learner experience and provides great role models for those currently studying at the college.

Former students with aphasia have also been invited back to City Lit to talk on our professional training courses about their own experiences of aphasia and therapy.  Aphasia is the common name given for the communication difficulty someone experiences following stroke or head injury.  Input from our aphasia student volunteers has proved invaluable as a means of providing real life examples to our students, and our feedback shows their presence is much appreciated by classes - ‘the best part of the course was when we met clients and heard about their experiences of therapy’.

Finally, we also have a number of volunteers who want to become speech and language therapists, who have volunteered tirelessly to gain the level of familiarity with speech therapy needed to be accepted onto a speech and language therapy training course, where competition is traditionally fierce.

 

Learning disabilities volunteer

Volunteer for students with learning disabilities

 

Courses for people with learning disabilities

Volunteers provide additional support for our students with learning disabilities. People join these courses because they have a learning disability, which may be in understanding words, or communicating with other people, or some other difficulty in learning skills and forming ideas in groups. Volunteer roles include helping students with literacy and numeracy in our 'Words and Numbers' classes, assisting visually impaired students layout of the room and helps with the location of instruments in music classes and supporting students in keeping time and staying on task.

 

Interested in volunteering at City Lit?

Visit the City Lit volunteering page or email infoline@citylit.ac.uk