Eleanor Sharples at Westminster House
My main aim was to ensure that I fully integrate myself into the Westminster House Youth Club project, by wholly embracing the objectives of the club under the leadership of Kate Worthington and Wayne Virgo.
I wanted to ensure that as a student volunteer I was respected yet gained a closer affiliation with the children to enable me to have a broader outlook on life through working in an inner city community.
I was keen to make sure that I brought my leadership skills which I learnt and developed out in Ghana (whilst working with children of a similar age) to the work I was involved in with the Westminster House Youth Club (WHYC).
Most importantly for me was to ensure that the children had fun and enjoyed all aspects of the activities in which they took part.
-It has certainly developed my confidence, especially when the different activities provided for the children meant that I could get to know each of them more individually. The"on site"day in particular helped me to develop my confidence as I set up and got to join in with activities such as quick cricket to get the children active and enjoying themselves- I'm glad to say my team won!
-My communicating skills have certainly developed, even from the littlest things such as talking to the children about life at home and school and how being a part of the club has helped them progress and develop as young people, by getting integrated in activities such as girls football or the Duke of Edinburgh scheme.
-Having previously undertaken a trip to Ghana which involved learning and teaching young people of a similar age to the ones at Westminster House, I was able to bring them to the table here at Westminster House.
-I have undertaken joint leadership projects with another worker called Ann when in Southend which included looking after a group and ensuring they behave yet have fun.
-I have developed my individual leadership when in charge of a group of 10 at the "Snow Camp" course which was ran over two days in which the children and I got chance to develop our communicating and listening skills with each other as well as our snowboarding skills!
-Most significantly to me I found was working with children a similar age to myself, to some I was only 2 years older than them and this was made evident by the young people thinking I was a lot older than I actually was- one even asked me if I was married!