My placement with Volunteer Dundee – by Alyssa Faulkner
I am a second year Community Learning and Development student at the University of Dundee, and as part of that, I have to go on several work placements throughout my course. This block of placement was for 70 days, and I was placed at Volunteer Dundee. Going in, I had no idea what to expect, as I didn’t know much about the charity.
I knew from the start I would be working on 2 projects with 2 different project workers: Audrie on Discoverin’ Families Charleston, and Simona on Micro-Community Action (Make It Happen). Both projects have a completely different outlook as to how they work. Audrie’s project has a set programme, with an event once every 2 weeks, and Simona’s project is more fluid, as groups and events happen when there is a need. This was good, as it meant that I would get a feel for both ways of working.
When working with Audrie in Charleston, I have worked with the same people throughout my time here, and it have been an honour to build up relationships with them, and really get a feel into the community they live in. Everyone made me feel truly welcome, and that is something I will truly cherish. The fact that I am from Ayrshire originally made my learning curve steeper as I have now learnt a lot more about being Dunonian and what it means to have grown up in Dundee, though the accent at times has been difficult for me to pick up! I have loved watching how much the families get out of attending the events that Audrie organises, and I am so happy that I got to be a part of that.
Working with Simona has been a completely different experience. I have done Youth Work, done work in communities, we have collaborated on projects with other organisations, and this has been an eye opener as to how the third sector works. With Simona, we have been incorporating the communities’ views, and including them in the decision making process, and that has been a real pleasure to watch. Seeing how passionate both Simona and the communities are to making a difference about where they live is incredible.
I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Volunteer Dundee, and as a starting point in my career as a CLD practitioner, I feel that this has been such an amazing opportunity for me. Moving forward from this, I will be able to use all the learning I have gained here, and hopefully the students that come after me will get as much out of the placement as I did!
Alyssa Faulkner BA CLD 2nd Year
Editors Note: We would like to offer our sincerest thanks to Alyssa for being such a wonderful student. She has been a delight to have in the office and has supported both projects extensively. She will be missed but we have told her in no uncertain terms that she much keep in touch. We wish her all the best for the rest of her studies and endeavours.
Should you wish to find out more about the projects you can contact our staff on firstname.lastname@example.org (Discoverin’ Families) and mailto:email@example.com(Make it Happen) and on 01382 305705