Volunteering in Victoria
There are a number of ways you can get involved and help Sands Victoria.
As Sands is a not-for-profit organisation, we rely heavily on the amazing support of volunteers to assist us in providing this support. Volunteers can be trained and become a Parent Supporter helping on a rotating shift roster on the 24/7 telephone support line, at a face-to-face support group. Volunteers can join the board by attending the AGM and become involved in the decision making processes helping direct Sands Victoria to stronger future. Volunteers can help at events to raise awareness, raise our profile or to raise funds, or help with the daily office operations.
Here’s how you can get involved:
1.Direct contact with bereaved parents
This type of role can take a number of forms including:
-Telephone Support (Level 1 training mandatory)
This is the heart of the Sands Victoria service. Without the Parent Supporters the many parents who call in need of support, would not find the relief and validation that the telephone support line provides. Volunteers are specifically trained to take calls from bereaved parents who want to talk to a person who has experienced the loss of a baby. If you are interested in offering this kind of support to bereaved parents contact the Network Co-ordinator
(N.B There are special requirements for these roles)
-Support-group facilitation (Level 2 training mandatory)
Volunteers who have under-taken Level 1 training, are trained to facilitate one of the local a support groups where bereaved parents meet on a monthly basis for informal discussion and support. This involves working on a face-to-face basis, rather than on a telephone basis.
Some newly bereaved parents request that a Sands volunteer/staff member visit them in hospital or at home to provide information and support.This involves under-taking the training and using the support skills to help newly bereaved parents on a face-to-face basis, one-on-one- as in just you and the parent(s).
2.Volunteer at an event / Event Management
Volunteers are involved in a number of annual events including the Baby and Children’s Expo and the Walk to Remember. If you are able to help our Marketing and Community Development Officer organise an event, design promotional fliers, decorate venues, hand out pamphlets, sell raffle tickets and act as marshals at an event, this may be the role for you. Time commitment is event specific.
3.The distribution of Sands information brochures
You can call the Sands Office and offer to distribute fliers at your local child-care centre, school, doctors surgery or workplace based on your knowledge of a friend or colleague having experienced a loss, and helping the people around them learn more about perinatal death. This can help many parents in-directly.
This role can include contact with your local agencies e.g. hospitals, Doctors, Funeral Homes and Community Health Centres. A level of experience with phone support/group facilitation is preferred for this role in order to visit health facilities
4.Sands Victoria Newsletter
This role would include sourcing articles, poems, stories and the like, assisting with layout and typing of content. Some previous experience would be helpful.
If you wish to submit something for the newsletter click here(hyperlink to Newsletter sub-page, off Victoria Services)
Assistance is always required for specific tasks including mail-outs, photocopying and stocktake. If you are time-poor and only have a couple of hours to spare, your assistance in the office would be appreciated. This can be a once-off commitment.
If you have specific skills in information technology you help would be gratefully accepted. This support may even be able to take the form of phone support when needed.
7.Committee of Management
Sands Victoria is an Incorporated Associationled by a Committee of Management. The Committee meets monthly and also is involved in the management of daily operations, as well as overall strategic governance. If you have skills in the areas of finance, marketing, administration, fundraising or technology, we would love to have you on the Committee. Applications are considered at the AGM, however expressions of interest can be received at any time. This involved an ongoing commitment for a term (12months +)
8.Involvement on the Sands Marketing Subcommittee
If you have some time to spare and would like to meet monthly to help raise awareness and raise funds and build community, then the Marketing Subcommittee could be for you. This involves helping with events at a co-ordination level and helping to steer the direction of the overall promotion of Sands Victoria.
9.Community / Professional Education
If you are a bereaved parent who feels ready to share your story and help others by helping them learn from your experiences, then this type of volunteering role may be of interest. An important part of Sands is to provide community and professional education regarding miscarriage, stillbirth or newborn death. This type of role can take a number of forms including:
This role involves presenting information sessions to professionals or community groups. Other professionals are always keen to hear the story of a bereaved parent to help them understand how best to support a parent they may come in contact with. A volunteer will always attend a community education session with, and be supported by, a Sands staff member.
-Contact with media
Sands are often approached for comment to the media when they are doing stories relating to miscarriage, stillbirth or neonatal death. Often, the journalist is interested in interviewing bereaved parents as part of this.
A level of experience with phone support/group facilitation is preferred for this role. Time commitment is session specific
To Volunteer with Sands Victoria fill out this form. For any further information or to have your questions answered, please contact the Sands Victoria office.