My name is Clare and I have been in post since April 2012 as the Development Worker for the Grassroots Project. I co-ordinate and manage the Project so that involves a range of different things including making sure our targets are achieved for our funder, Big Lottery, compile reports for partners, management and the Board, participate on various steering groups, raise the profile of the Project locally and nationally by working in partnership with a range of agencies and presenting to local groups/organisations. I support Christine, the Project Worker, volunteers and referrals to the project. I also chair the Grassroots Project Steering Group and Volunteer meetings which are held quarterly. A big part of my role is to facilitate a relationship between beneficiaries and volunteers by carefully matching and arranging meetings/suggesting activities for them. This can be very challenging due to people’s every changing circumstances so a lot of cancellations/re-arranging happens. Although, saying that, this is the most rewarding element. Our volunteers make a fantastic contribution to supporting families to live a healthier, less stressful lifestyle which often results in beneficiaries wanting to become volunteers themselves to give something back to the Project that they themselves benefited from. I am delighted to see that ALL of our families have taken something positive away with them from their time with us.
My main role over the past few months has been, along with other staff, working on a Big Lottery funding application to keep the Project going beyond March 2015. Funding is a constant challenge and pressure when working in the voluntary sector.
I have worked in community led health for almost 10 years in different roles, for a range of different organisations across various local authority areas and when I joined Healthy Valleys it has given me a true insight into the inequalities people face in the rural area and the difference Healthy Valleys is making to reducing these inequalities. This has made me feel even more passionate about supporting families/individuals who need extra help.