Chance for hopeful London 2012 volunteers to boost their CVs


Merton’s hopeful Olympic volunteers are receiving a helping hand from Merton Council and neighbouring Wandsworth Council.

By Gemma Francis

Merton’s hopeful Olympic volunteers are receiving a helping hand from Merton Council and neighbouring Wandsworth Council.

The Personal Best training programme is designed to help Merton residents lacking in qualifications gain experience and confidence in the voluntary sector.

As the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will require 70,000 volunteers, the programme aims to prepare people for this by offering training and volunteer opportunities in the lead up.

Merton Adult Education is running a series of eight week courses where students build a portfolio to achieve their City and Guilds Level 1 award in Preparation for Events Volunteering.

Personal Best spokeswoman, Wendy Martin, is working on improving local awareness of the programme.

She said: “From the two classes that have run so far, those who have completed the training really enjoyed it with regards to doing more voluntary work and building their confidence.

“We’ve had really good feedback, one man had grown so much in confidence his voluntary workers couldn’t believe it was the same person.”

The programme ultimately aims to encourage 20,000 people into long term jobs, using the skills learned and the work experience from at least 30 hours of work placements.

Student on one of the current courses, Monica Bazanye, had a National Trust placement at Morden Hall in Merton. 

On completing her placement, the National Trust asked her to continue there for the foreseeable future.

She said: “I have found this course really useful. Learning all about how to write a good CV and job application will help me to achieve a voluntary post, hopefully something to do with the Olympics, and also will improve my chances of getting paid work too.” 

Merton Council cabinet member for environment and leisure services Councillor David Simpson said: “These adult education courses offer a wonderful opportunity for people who are out of work to gain invaluable skills for life. 

“The Olympics will provide so many incredible opportunities for Londoners.”

Students receive a mix of one-to-one and small group tuition, as well as learning materials for their coursework, which is examined by City and Guilds. 

The final day of each course is held at the All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon – one of the 2012 Olympic venues.

For more information on 2012 volunteering contact

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