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Our Memory Makers programme works with children from age 9 to 12. For our programme working with older children and young adults (age 13-19), please see our Youth Mentoring programme.
What is Memory Makers?
Our childhood experiences are the foundations for how we develop as adults. Happy memories are crucial in children’s psychological and emotional growth. However, there are children in Swindon who are at risk of not having any positive memories of childhood at all.
Some children in Swindon are growing up in deprived households – several of Swindon’s wards rank well above the national average for child poverty. Others are struggling to deal with bereavement or family breakdown.
Memory Makers is about creating positive memories for children – not only giving them good times to remember, but also helping with their personal development and giving them hope for the future.
What do Memory Makers Do?
Memory Makers are adult volunteers who meet with children regularly to share simple but meaningful experiences. These will typically be activities guided by the child’s interests, such as going for a walk, reading a much loved book, or playing a board game together.
Memory Makers typically make a commitment to meet with the child for a few hours every fortnight. By listening and giving children the opportunity to make decisions and choices, Memory Makers help to develop their life skills.
How Do I Become a Memory Maker?
All of the children involved with the Memory Makers programme are different, and so we need a broad range of people to match them with. Our current Memory Makers are a very diverse group, with ages ranging from 18 years to the retired; men and women; people with lots of experience of working with children, and people with no experience at all.
As long as you are over 18, there’s nothing stopping you from becoming a Memory Maker – you just need to be able to put the child at the centre of the relationship – and the ability to have lots of fun!
SMASH provides initial information events and regular catch up sessions to ensure that all Memory Makers are confident and comfortable with their role.
Click to open our application form: Volunteer Application Form June 2017 You can fill this in on your computer and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can print it off and fill it out by hand then return it to:
SMASH Youth Project
Pinetrees Community Centre
Dates of our next training in 2017 will be posted here as soon as they are confirmed. Applications from volunteers are welcome all year round.