How to be a great Guardian!
- Got a few hours to spare a month?
- Got good networks – they can be professional or social – it is more about who you know rather than what you know!
- Want to support people from excluded communities to achieve their dreams?
- This could be for you…
- We get customers referred from various organisations eg the City of Sanctuary or NHS organisations
- The Director matches referrals up with a Guardian and links them up
- You make a phone call to arrange a meeting in a public place – coffee shops are good!
- You agree with your customer what their aims are and start agreeing a plan for what you can do to help and what they need to do.
What you might do for them…
- Look at their cv and help them improve it if necessary
- Help them understand ‘how we do things here’ and how systems work, like the NHS or Education or Local Government
- Think of people you could introduce them to – they might be in leadership positions who can make things happen; they might be happy to arrange some shadowing in their organisation so customers can see at first hand how things work; they might offer some work experience or consider them for roles in their organisation
- Think laterally…
What you need to remember….
- Our customers have often been let down or even treated with disrepect by those in authority
- They may lack confidence and self esteem
- They might test you to see if you are serious about helping them!
- Say what you are going to do and do it
- Keep in touch with them regularly If only to say how are you doing?
- Be persistent and consistent!
- The relationship does not have to be a long term one – sometimes they just want a launchpad and off they go! Others come and go and some stay for a long time.
- There may be a bit of mentoring or coaching but we are not there to sort out their everyday problems like benefit or housing – their referral agency will do that. We are there to support them to achieve their ambitions
- We need to treat all their information confidentially and respect their privacy
- If we find out something bad is happening to them or they are involved in something criminal for example we need to report it!
What sort of customers do we have?
- Most are refugees but not all
- Some are professionally qualified here or in their country of origin
- Some just want to get a job or start some training
- They all have ambition!
If you are stuck tell us!
- You will be allocated a Guardian Angel who can advise you
- The website can be found on www.growingpoints.co.uk
- On the site there is a Guardian Zone where information is available on other Guardians whom you might want to contact
(it is password protected and you will be given details)
- There are policies on the GZ about confidentiality and disclosure to others
- There is general information about resources on the site
- There are some handy top tips
If you have any questions about this, or wish to become a Guardian, please contact the Growing Points Director, see Who we are.