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Author Topic: Journey Makers - recruiting for Swindon, Bath Spa and Newbury  (Read 1779 times)
grahame
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« on: September 25, 2020, 04:52:26 am »

The door is closed at present to the sort of volunteering I have been involved in at local stations through Community Rail Network / GWR (Great Western Railway) routes.  And I can understand the logic behind that.  However, the national "Journey Makers" program is in action, with volunteers outside the controlled area at key stations providing a friendly word is open ... recruiting in our area through a DfT» (Department for Transport - about) / nationally mandated and contracted organisation ... and may (I will leave members to decide) be useful and provide some sort of feeling of usefulness for volunteers.


From gov.uk

Quote
Volunteers focused on providing passengers with simpler, safer journeys were recognised by Rail Minister Chris Heaton-Harris today (22 September 2020), as he thanked ?Journey Makers? at Norwich Station for their role in helping support passenger journeys on the railways.

Announced in May 2020, the project ? which the Department for Transport (DfT) is delivering with the national charity Volunteering Matters ? will deploy hundreds of volunteers to stations across the country, supporting the existing transport staff to welcome passengers and help them to travel confidently and safely across the network.

Journey Makers are trained to provide reassurance, advice and friendly assistance to passengers around transport hubs. The volunteers will help to deliver a continuous flow of people around stations, preventing overcrowding and queues.

And from a tweet:

Quote
Between the hours of 7am-10am and 4pm-7pm, Monday to Friday. Days & hours to suit you ? travelling expenses reimbursed.  Contact Simon for more details at jm18@volunteeringmatters.org.uk .  Journey Makers Volunteer Manager for SWINDON Become a volunteer Journey Maker!

I have been in touch with Simon ... who's also looking for Bath Spa (10 a.m to 1 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. shifts) and Newbury. I'll probably be helping with some shifts at Swindon - going through the online training at th moment, and meeting up with him on Wednesday.  With current turmoil, many of the "usual suspects" for volunteering are not available or unwilling the help, and not everyone fancies or is suitable for the role, so for the right people very much an opportunity.  Please feel free to get in touch with Simon (do mention my name ;-) ) if interested ... my understanding is that it makes sense for multiple people to start at the same time if you're clear on Wednesday
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grahame
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« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2020, 09:55:25 am »

Briefing yesterday ... and first shift ... posting this picture with considerable reservations because the role is one to be a friendly reminder and help to people and not to form a barrier of uniformed people that enforces masks, flows and distancing.



Observations?    From standing for a couple of hours just inside the station entrance - most people putting on their masks as they entered the station - a handful gently reminded with no more than a point at the face. A few with sunflower lanyards.  But many masks worn covering just the mouth, not mouth and nose.  A number of friendly exchanges - just a word or a smile. And ... customer enquiries, showing the very real use of customer ambassador.   Frankly overstaffed, with Kieran and I, Karen from GWR (Great Western Railway), BTP (British Transport Police) and gateline staff - all friendly enough too, though we had been warned of union concerns should we get close to the gate line.   In practise, the team on there had not been alerted that we would be there, but a quiet friendly word does miracles.

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« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2020, 01:29:32 pm »

Nice to receive a copy of a letter from the DfT» (Department for Transport - about) to Volunteering Matters thanking them for the exceptional support and committment provided.  It is particularly welcome because it includes the grass routes volunteers in the thanks, and has been passed on and circulated to reach us.



The letter talks of support and guidance provided by volunteers at Transport Hubs. In my view, any station which (in a regular year) has over 25,000 journey made could benefit from being considered to be a "Transport Hub", with an especial concentration on stations normally unstaffed, or staffed stations outside staffing hours.   Stations friends groups and where a station does not have such a group, then a Community Rail Partnership, are well placed so assist on management and security at a local level.
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