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Can I become a volunteer Health Connect Coach?

Image: volunteer wordle grapic

About the role

The volunteer coach is someone who has a good understanding of their own long-term health condition and is motivated to use the skills and strategies they have developed to manage their condition well.

They will be carefully recruited, trained, supported and supervised to volunteer in this role.

As a Volunteer Health Connect Coach you will be connecting with, and using health coaching skills to support and empower, individuals to manage their long-term health condition.

Through coaching conversations, your peer will be supported to increase their knowledge, skills, understanding and confidence, in order to move forward with positive changes, and goal setting they would like to make (short and long term) to enable better management of their health and wellbeing.

Engagement of a peer’s knowledge, skills, understanding and confidence (also known as activation levels) will be measured. In order to assist for the most beneficial positive behavioural change in your peer, a consistent approach is desirable for a minimum of six consecutive months. The stepped/ tapered approach used with peers is based on the below model; 14 sessions per peer over 6 months, with flexibility if needed.

Months 5 and 6 – monthly sessions – 3

Months 3 and 4 – fortnightly sessions – 2

Months 1 and 2 – weekly sessions – 1

We envisage that one coach could have up to five peers, at different intensities, at any given time but we will be guided by your volunteering time and commitment availability.

Ideally you will be paired with a peer who experiences the same or similar health condition or symptoms to yourself. This is so that your own lived experience and personal understanding could provide additional support to your peer through your person-centred coaching conversations.

As this is a new programme, you may be working with researchers, if this applies to you, and you want to take part. For more information on the research study see our Peer Connect page.

In order to abide by government advice regarding social distancing, and minimise lone working risks as a volunteer, supportive coaching conversations are best advised to be done through online video calling using Microsoft Teams from your own home (being mindful to allow a confidential safe space for your peer). We do not support any contact to be had with your peer physically in their own home.

This role is flexible around your own commitments and lifestyles, as well as those of your peer, so the time of your coaching session’s will be an agreement between you both. In order to have support available to you before/during/after your coaching sessions, should you need it, we do ask that you deliver your coaching sessions, at least initially, at the available working times of your volunteer manager (which will be made flexible around this service needs).

Volunteer Application and Recruitment Process:

  1. You will indicate your interest in the role as a volunteer peer coach with the Health Connect Coaching programme.
  2. The volunteer application form and role description / role profile needs read, signed and returned (if you are already a volunteer with the Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust then only the role description will need to be signed and returned).
  3. Health Connect coordinators forward your application and/or role description to the Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust (TSDFT) volunteer service for processing.
  4. The Health Connect Coaching coordinators will be in touch to arrange an interview via Microsoft Teams (a space for you, the volunteer service and coordinators to meet, find out more about you/the programme).
  5. Successful interview – volunteer service will complete documentation needed and sign you onto mandatory training (if you are a new volunteer).
  6. The Health Connect coordinators will be in touch regarding training for the role once confirmation received from Volunteer service of application process completion.
  7. Completion of recruitment.

You may like to take a look at a short video that has been created to promote the programme.

For further information, and to apply for the role of the Volunteer Health Connect Coach, please get in touch:
Email: Health Connect Coaching Programme coordinators
Tel: 07825 792847