Engaging with Homeless People

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Engaging with Homeless People by Mind Map: Engaging with Homeless People

1. Commitment

1.1. Achievement

1.1.1. Homeless people highlighting apathy gets in the way of volunteering (See Link: page 50)

1.1.1.1. Develop volunteering opportunities where homeless people can see an 'end product' (See link: pages 17 & 21)

1.1.1.2. Groups of hostel residents meeting to help each other set individual goals (See link: page 52)

1.1.2. Over half of homeless people wish to put something back into community and helping those less fortunate (See link: page 48)

1.1.2.1. Homeless people are also keen to work with an agency that helps homeless people (See link: page 10)

1.1.2.2. (Also see link: page 6)

1.1.3. Homeless people seek opportunities to gain skills and do something interesting (See link: page 48)

1.1.3.1. (Also see link: page 6)

1.1.4. Roles with no room for development were found to be less rewarding (See link: page 27)

1.2. Status/Influence

1.2.1. Not wanting to work for free (See link: page 49)

1.2.2. Concerned about being taken for granted or given low status tasks (See link: page 27)

1.2.2.1. Providing supervision for volunteers and involving them in team meetings (See link: page 32)

1.2.2.2. Giving volunteers the opportunity to develop projects (See link: pages 6 and 10)

1.2.3. Homeless people are keen to develop their confidence (See link: page 48)

1.2.4. 33% of homeless people identified their own lack of confidence as a barrier to volunteering (See link: page 12)

1.2.4.1. Providing meaningful activity develops confidence building (See link: page 51)

1.2.4.2. Providing clarity around the volunteering role and tasks (See link: page 25)

1.2.4.3. Volunteers being made to feel welcome. Attention to 'small things' and with people taking the time to show them around (See link: page 24)

1.2.4.4. Provision of training to carry out a new volunteering role well (See link: page 23)

1.2.5. Concern that they would be taking someone else's job (See link: page 49)

1.2.6. 30% of homeless people identified their personal appearance as a barrier to volunteering (See link: page 12)

1.3. Social/affiliation

1.3.1. Homeless people happy to volunteer to meet new people, and all consider this to happen in reality (See link: pages 5 and 7)

1.3.1.1. Providing induction activities in groups (See link: page 11)

1.4. Safety

1.4.1. 37% of homeless people identified the stigma of being homeless as a barrier to volunteering (See link: page 12)

1.4.1.1. Nearly all volunteers living in hostels or temporary housing feel able to disclose their background to volunteer-involving organisations (See link: page 20)

1.4.2. 21% of homeless people would only consider volunteering if their lives became more stable (See link: page 5)

1.4.3. A third of homeless people indicated they did not feel well enough to volunteer (See link: page 49)

1.4.4. Fear about benefits being stopped (See link: page 49)

1.4.4.1. Provide written guidance for homeless people on volunteering, police checks and benefits etc. (See link: pages 12-14)

1.5. Practicality

1.5.1. 27% of homeless people identified having no fixed contact address as a barrier to volunteering (See link: page 12)

1.5.2. Concerned they would have to pay their expenses or reimburse for travel (See link: page 51)

1.5.2.1. (Also see link: page 34)

2. Contribution - high interest stakeholders

2.1. High influence

2.1.1. Sponsors

2.1.1.1. Establish a cross-department working group to support the programme (See link: page 7)

2.1.1.2. Using key projects to build partnerships with other organisations (See link: page 52)

2.1.1.3. Organisations should only take on what fits within their aims and ethos (See link: page 25)

2.1.2. Blockers

2.1.2.1. Homeless organisations can have a policy of refusing homeless people to volunteer in their organisation due to confidentiality and boundaries (See link: page 13)

2.1.2.1.1. (Also, see link: page 22)

2.1.2.2. Staff concerns about how homeless volunteers are to be supported (See link: page 6)

2.1.2.2.1. Establish a cross-department working group to support the programme and clarify the roles of key staff (See link: page 7)

2.1.2.2.2. Ensure those responsible for supporting homeless volunteers are well supported/trained (See link: page 16)

2.2. Low influence

2.2.1. Beneficiaries

2.2.1.1. Successful volunteering experiences for homeless people enhances word-of-mouth' volunteer recruitment (See link: page 11)

2.2.1.2. Developing projects for homeless volunteers to transform resources for the benefit of the community (See link: page 53)

2.2.2. Victims

2.2.2.1. Volunteers can have bad experiences from staff who resent volunteers (See link: page 33)

2.2.2.2. Current staff can struggle with a new requirement of having to work alongside/manage volunteers (See link: page 33)

2.2.2.3. A bad experience from one organisation is likely to put homeless people off volunteering 'full stop' (See link: page 14)

2.2.2.3.1. Volunteer centres providing more detailed support and advice around volunteering for homeless people (See link: page 10)

2.2.2.4. Homeless volunteers not feeling trusted due to the stigma of being homeless (See link: page 21)

2.2.2.4.1. Undertake research to review if stigma does stop mainstream organisations from involving homeless people (See link: page 17)

3. Contribution - low interest stakeholders

3.1. High Influence

3.1.1. Positive influencers

3.1.1.1. Monitor and evaluate homeless volunteering programmes and measure wider outcomes (See link: page 24)

3.1.1.2. Organisations can be more than willing to take on homeless people as volunteers (See link:page 13)

3.1.1.3. Liaise with prime-providers, job-centres, DWP etc. to promote volunteering as a valid alternative to paid work or education for homeless people (See Link: page 49)

3.1.2. Negative influencers

3.1.2.1. Problems within volunteer-involving organisations of the concept of homeless people volunteering (See link: page 13)

3.1.2.1.1. Promote volunteering successes for homeless people in the wider voluntary and community sector (See link: page 13)

3.1.2.2. Volunteering is not routinely suggested as an option for homeless people (See link: page 11)

3.1.2.2.1. Opportunities for homelessness agencies to develop links with organisations that provide one-off volunteering opportunities (See link: page 12)

3.1.2.3. There can be power imbalances when developing external partnerships (See link: page 18)

3.1.2.4. Homeless agency staff have more important priorities to invest their limited resources in supporting their clients to volunteer (See link: page 5)

3.1.2.4.1. Also see link: page 13)

3.1.2.5. Funders tend to view volunteering and a means to obtain employment, however 58% of homeless people do not view volunteering in that way (See link: page 6)

3.1.2.6. Jobcentre Plus staff routinely advising people incorrectly that volunteering may affect welfare benefits (See link: pages 13 & 14)

3.1.2.7. CRB checks taking a long time to come though results in volunteers losing interest (See link: page 49)

3.2. Low influence

3.2.1. Bystanders

3.2.1.1. Around half of young homeless people who signed up to volunteer did not attend their first session (See link: page 11)

3.2.1.1.1. Providing the chance to visit the organisation before making a decision to volunteer for them (See link: page 13)

3.2.1.1.2. Develop partnerships with key-workers (See link: page 9)

3.2.1.1.3. A careful screening approach ensuring potential volunteers are aware of the project will reduce drop-out rates (See link: pages 11/12)

3.2.1.2. Lack of buy-in from existing staff (See link: page 7)

3.2.1.3. Persuading young homeless people that volunteering could be beneficial is difficult (See link: page 9)

3.2.1.3.1. Involving volunteers with a homeless background to support the volunteer recruitment processes (See link: page 9)

3.2.1.3.2. Develop links between homelessness agencies and volunteering brokerage agencies (See link: page 16)

3.2.1.4. Easy to attract young homeless people to attend an event, but difficult to encourage regular attendance (See link: page 10)

3.2.1.4.1. Develop short-term and one-off volunteering projects (See link: page 7)

3.2.1.5. Many homeless people are disengaged from support agencies (See link: page 15)

4. Competence

4.1. Skills

4.1.1. Organisational

4.1.1.1. Working with volunteers with additional support needs challenges conventional ways of managing volunteers (See link: page 12)

4.1.1.1.1. Recommended volunteer management guidelines (See link: pages 34-36)

4.1.1.1.2. Make a distinction between support to help homeless people volunteer and that relating to their social exclusion (See link: page 13)

4.1.1.1.3. For partnership projects, ensure effective working links with those working directly with homeless people [rather than just working with senior staff] (See link: page 8)

4.1.1.1.4. Employing volunteer coordinators with experience of working with hard-to-reach volunteers (See link: page 6)

4.1.1.1.5. Using other staff within the organisation to provide support [key workers] (See link: page 13)

4.1.1.1.6. Pay more attention to the planning stage to identify potential support needs of homeless volunteers (See link: page 7)

4.1.1.1.7. Being flexible about volunteering arrangements and offering breaks if required (See link: pages 15-16)

4.1.1.1.8. Involving volunteers with a homeless background to assist with volunteer recruitment and ongoing volunteer support processes (See link: page 9 and 20)

4.1.1.2. Homeless volunteers able to offer their time during the day could be a valuable resources to different departments (See link)

4.1.1.3. Volunteer-involving organisations not always able to support homeless volunteers' progression needs (See link: page 6)

4.1.1.3.1. 88% of homeless people are happy to take part in one-off volunteering opportunities (See link: page 11)

4.1.1.3.2. Linking with support staff in homeless agencies (See link: page 14)

4.1.1.4. Organisations only having specific time slots for volunteer interviews, which homeless volunteers did not make(See link: page 10)

4.1.1.5. Homeless people found application procedures were too complicated and unnecessary [and application forms were too long] (See link: page 17)

4.1.1.5.1. Interview procedures that are relaxed and informal (See link: page 18)

4.1.2. Individual

4.1.2.1. Some volunteers need to be asked to leave as their behaviour affected other homeless volunteers (See link: page 13)

4.1.2.2. Homeless people not attending specific time slots for volunteer interviews (See link: page 10)

4.2. Knowledge

4.2.1. Organisational

4.2.1.1. Volunteer-involving organisations with limited experience of working with homeless volunteers (See link: page 6)

4.2.1.1.1. Create an internal mentoring scheme, which naturally develops organisational knowledge (See link: page 14)

4.2.1.1.2. Volunteer development agencies to develop resources supporting homeless people volunteering (See link: page 13)

4.2.1.2. Little known in volunteer-involving organisations that 69% of homeless people who volunteer, started to volunteer after they had become homeless (See link: page 6)

4.2.1.3. Problems caused by blurring of boundaries between professional and personal lives (See link: page 15)

4.2.1.3.1. Protocols in place to clarify who volunteers could contact, and when (See link: page 15)

4.2.2. Individual

4.2.2.1. Problems caused by blurring of boundaries between professional and personal lives (See link: page 15)

4.2.2.1.1. Protocols in place to clarify who volunteers could contact, and when (See link: page 15)

4.2.2.2. Homeless people not seeing the right sort of volunteering opportunities (See link: page 5)

4.2.2.2.1. An information resource for homeless people seeking to engage in volunteering (See link)

4.2.2.2.2. Support provision that helps homeless people find worthwhile volunteering opportunities (See link: page 16)

4.2.2.3. Providing all the information about volunteering on first contact (See link: page 12)

4.2.2.4. Homeless people are unlikely to be connected to the 'word-of mouth' recruitment networks (See link: page 15)

4.2.2.4.1. Making support workers more aware of the benefits of volunteering and how to signpost opportunities (See link: page 12)