Tuesday, September 9, 2008

NSS Volunteers Update #4 / 2008

Dear NSS Volunteers,

Since my previous NSS Volunteers Update (#3 at the end of May), the work of co-ordinating volunteers continues to be extremely busy. NSS again partnered with the School of Education at the University of Newcastle, resulting in good recruitment numbers of students for volunteering. These uni students, along with other new volunteers, have mostly been placed in our educational volunteer programs to assist children of refugee families, ie. in the Schools, at the Homework Centre, and for In-Home tutoring. There has been a steady intake of new volunteers offering to help at Penola House with the African women’s sewing groups, childminding and reception work. We also receive a small referral of volunteers from the Hunter Volunteer Centre.

A huge “Thank you” to all our wonderful volunteers, and “Welcome aboard” to our newest recruits.

Current Volunteering Needs
Please contact me if you (or someone you know) can assist with any of these volunteer activities:

* Shopping Assistance #1 – URGENT! Shopping transport required by Sudanese woman - newly referred to NSS. I’m told that she’s having a baby this month! and would like car transport for shopping every Thursday at about 11am from her home in Lambton Gardens to the Jesmond shops & then back home.

* Shopping Assistance #2 – Shopping transport required by Burundian woman, once per fortnight on Friday morning from her home in Waratah to the Farmer’s Markets at Sandgate & then back home.

* In-Home Tutor #1 – Homework support required for 3 Primary school age children (of the Sudanese woman mentioned above) at their home in Lambton Gardens. Probably 2 volunteers are needed for these children.

* In-Home Tutors #2 & #3 – Study/Assignment assistance needed for 2 Sudanese adults enrolled in Bachelor of Nursing course at the University of Newcastle. I think both are at 1st year level. One student lives in Wickham and the other lives in Hamilton - however, meeting at the university could also be a good option.

* Driving Supervision – This need continues to be difficult to fill by volunteers. About 10 volunteers with full driver’s licence are needed to provide driving practice supervision for African refugees, who need to log 120 hours of practice to apply for the P licence test. Refugees use their own cars, have Comprehensive or 3rd Party Property Insurance, pay for their own petrol, and have already had several driving school lessons.
Suburbs: Jesmond, Mayfield (3), Raymond Terrace, Shortland, Waratah (2), Lambton.

* Possible Mentoring Roles/Program – Young female volunteers and/or women interested in mentoring roles are required for possible programs to assist adolescent females of African refugee families. The need is to provide mentoring & role modelling by way of friendships & socialising to show good lifestyle choices, etc. to young African females at risk of unwanted pregnancy and dropping out of education. Such a pilot program has recently been started by the Josephite nuns, who have asked for suitable volunteers to become involved in further programs.

Volunteer Survey/Audit 2008
With the total number of “active” NSS volunteers exceeding 200, it is time to audit and update our volunteer records. In order to get your input, NSS will be sending out a Volunteer Survey/Audit later this month - by email where possible, otherwise by post. For email recipients please look out for this audit sent from a special NSS email address, eg. survey@nsservices.com.au. Note: This is not email spam! A small group of TAFE students will be helping to process the 200+ responses.

West African Dinner Night
See email below from African team leader, Michael Adderley, about a great upcoming social event!

Michael Freund
NSS Volunteers Co-ordinator


From: Michael Adderley
Subject: West African Dinner Night

Hi all

As a volunteer working with members of the African community in Newcastle we would like to invite you to the upcoming West African Dinner Night. Despite working with members of the African community few people have experienced the exciting flavours African cooking has to offer. Now is your chance to experience something new.

All details are on the flyer below.

This activity is in support a number of causes, including the Newcastle PCYC, the Hunter African Communities Council as well as providing employment for the talented cooks we have amongst our new African community in Newcastle.

Tickets are available from Michael Adderley - 0400 829 327, Mohamed Kamara - 0422 286 110 and the Newcastle PCYC - 4961-4493.

Tables of 6 are available and group bookings are encouraged. We are however happy to organise 'volunteer tables' to give you an opportunity to meet other volunteers working with the African community.

To avoid disappointment book early as there are limited seats available and this event will sell out.

We hope to see you there


Michael Adderley
NSS Community Projects Officer

West African Dinner Night

Experience an evening of West African food and cultural performances

In support of the Hunter African Communities Council and the Newcastle PCYC

24th October 2008
6.30pm – 9pm

only $35 per person

BYO (no corkage)
Non-alcoholic drinks available for purchase

Newcastle PCYC courtyard (inside if raining)
Corner Young & Melbourne Sts, Broadmeadow

Tickets available from:
Newcastle PCYC (4961-4493)
Michael Adderley (0400 829 327)
Mohamed Kamara (0422 286 110)