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Training for Community Peer mentors

Community Peer Mentor project

VOLUNTEERS who are keen to support vulnerable and isolated people in Darlington are being sought to take part in a Community Peer Mentor training course set to start on Thursday 14 April. The five- week training course is free of charge and will take place at Darlington Fire Station from 6pm; sessions last for  2 ½ hours.

The Community Peer Mentors project is a joint initiative between the Durham Police and Crime Commissioner and Darlington Borough Council. It aims to support those suffering from anti-social behaviour or neighbourhood disputes, perceived or real.

The project also aims to help reduce the pressure on frontline services by engaging with individuals who make frequent calls and demands on services. The level of training required will depend on a volunteer’s experience, expertise and qualifications.

Once trained, Community Peer Mentors will work in pairs with individuals to find the reasons behind their behaviour or why they feel the way they do and encourage them to find ways to get the help and support they need.

Councillor Bill Dixon, Leader of Darlington Borough Council, said:

“This is a great opportunity to be involved in a fascinating and intensely rewarding area of voluntary work where you can make a real difference to people at a very difficult time in their lives. We are looking for people from all backgrounds with a range of life experiences to get involved.

“The community of Darlington has a long history or volunteering and I urge motivated, caring and enthusiastic individuals of all ages to get involved.”

Ron Hogg, Durham and Darlington’s Police and Crime Commissioner added: “People who are isolated and feeling vulnerable are more likely to turn to emergency services for help when, in fact, there are more appropriate places for them to seek help and support. Our Community Peer Mentors will help them find the support they need and allow our teams to focus on urgent priorities in the community.”

No previous experience in volunteering or supporting people is needed as training is provided. There is no upper age restriction and relevant travel expenses will be paid.

Applicants are invited to contact Jim Cunningham for more information or to register their interest on: 01325 405565 or email  jim.cunningham@darlington.gov.uk.

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Posted on Tuesday 8th March 2016
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