HeartKids Peers as Mentors
HEARTKIDS PEERS AS MENTORS UPDATE APRIL 2018
HeartKids is developing and we are looking for highly motivated and committed heart kid and Heart Angel (Bereaved) community members to volunteer for our program, HeartKids Peers as Mentors.
Whilst every families’ childhood heart disease journey is unique, Mentors can offer practical assistance, share their own story, be a friendly face, a supportive shoulder and voice on the end of the phone.
The HeartKids Peers as Mentors program is modelled on the highly successful USA Stanford Children’s Hospital program regarded internationally as a model making a tremendous impact through best practice. HeartKids funded research tells us that peer to peer support is a powerful and proven means of engaging families and assisting them by reducing uncertainty, increasing connectivity and improving coping mechanisms.
HeartKids Peer Mentors work under the supervision of our team of Support Managers and Coordinators and may partner with our staff in both hospital and community settings.
HeartKids Peer Mentors may provide support to families at time of diagnosis, during hospital stays and when they return home. In an extension of the Mentor program, Mentors are sought to support Heart Angel (Bereaved) families.
You can be involved in HeartKids hospital visiting program, running activities in your local communities, participate in Playgroups or simply catch up with a family on their return home.
Your local Support Team will put you in touch with families requiring peer support; this may be someone who lives locally or maybe your children share a similar condition.
Peers as Mentors may include families of children with childhood heart disease and adults living with congenital heart disease from across Australia who are willing to provide support to our HeartKids community. We simply ask that you live our values, are caring, supportive and empathic. You will need to be prepared to work as part of a team and seek input from your local Support manager.
Training will be provided to Peers as Mentors including initial training and ongoing support through the HeartKids teams:
• Comprehensive induction training and face to face professional development opportunities
• Reimbursement of out of pocket expenses including car parking, public transport costs and other incidentals
• A HeartKids uniform
• Coverage under HeartKids insurance
• Funding to cover your security checks such as a Police Check and help to coordinate your Working with Children Check
• Access to HeartKids Employee Assistance Program offering free counselling and debriefing, if necessary
• Skills statement and reference after twelve months in the role
Mentors will have the opportunity to assist in coordinating local events however are not expected to be fundraisers. Your primary focus is supporting families in conjunction with your local Support Team.
HeartKids will call for expressions of interest twice each year, with the next round of training anticipated in July 2018. This will be announced on Social Media and on this dedicated Mentors page.