August 2020 Update
WA – New volunteers are being trained and placed in schools and returning volunteers have now returned to school for their volunteering sessions.
VIC / NSW – Volunteers are not able to actively volunteer in schools during Term 3 and will be reconsidered in Term 4. We are continuing to recruit, screen and train new volunteers to be placed at schools when possible. We continue to support new and existing volunteers and are utilising their skills to help support schools digitally and remotely.
July Update: COVID-19 and EdConnect Australia (WA & VIC)
Term 2 of the school year is nearing completion and onsite learning has returned across the country. We have witnessed schools making a huge effort to establish new routines and structures for students and staff, ensuring they have safe and robust practices in place.
Each jurisdiction has made decisions about volunteers returning to schools on the advice of state government and the health authority. EdConnect Australia has been in communication with Education Departments to better understand what may be possible regarding volunteering during each phase of the restrictions.
In WA the majority of schools have already welcomed back volunteers with a few waiting until Term 3 to recommence. In Victoria, schools are working with EdConnect to determine what is possible with many schools working towards EdConnect volunteers recommencing at the start of Term 3. In NSW, volunteering will be reconsidered in Term 3.
Keeping strong engagement with our volunteers has been our priority and a rewarding experience for everyone. This has been achieved through virtual morning teas, online training, frequent email and phone communication and organisation updates as restrictions have shifted. Volunteers have actively participated in events, the highlight being the first hosting of our annual awards event in a virtual environment. If you didn’t have the opportunity to watch the event here is the link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bb5xxXJtank.
The message “Thank you for volunteering for EdConnect” resonated clearly!
There will be further training opportunities in the months ahead including a series of resilience and child and youth mental health webinars to support students and school communities. These have been made possible through small grant funding from the Inner North Community Foundation and Meami National.
Staff based at EdConnect’s head office in Maylands WA are transitioning to a mix of office based and working from home practises as of 22/6/2020. The Liaison Officers have been busy recruiting, screening and training new volunteers and we have a healthy number ready and eager to be placed in schools.
Please feel free to contact us if you would like further information or we can be of assistance. 1800 668 550