Archive for the ‘vInspired news & updates’ Category
The Big Fix, funded by v, is coming to London with an awesome live TV show in the prestigious X-Factor studios on Wednesday 21st July! For those not in the know The Bix Fix is a platform we fund in association with ITV for young people aged 16-25 to air their views and tackle burning issues that matter to them. On the night will be everything from music to dance, fashion, films, and even surprise celebrity guests!
So, here’s the details you need to know:
Wednesday 21st July 7:30pm – 9.30pm
Please note all tickets to join their audience have now gone! If you would like to be added to the waiting list however please email email@example.com
Don’t forget to tune in live to watch the show on Wednesday 21st July 7.30pm on itv.com!
We arrived just in time for dinner and it was only right we sampled the local delicacy – good old fish and chips, recommended by volunteer coordinator Damien to set us up for what was to be a long, fun-filled day ahead on the bigvbus.
Act Lyk U Kno!, Bass6, Master B-line and DJ Vibes provided the soundtrack to an amazing day on the bigvbus which featured everything from ‘Freestyle Football’ to ‘Ballgowns On The Beach’, balloon modelling, fashion, jewelery workshops and more!
I could tell you all about it but I think it’s only right our volunteers pick up from here! So take it away Dave, Sam and Megan…
T4 On The Beach 2010
Dave and Sam (Miss Bubble’s Balloon Modelling):
So, it’s about 2:30pm and our time volunteering on the bigvbus at T4 On The Beach is coming to an end… Having arrived on Friday we’ve enjoyed a relatively relaxing weekend camping before the festival began on the Sunday, where in our first four hours we were shocked to find the support the festival goers had for both the concept of volunteering and the benefits of being involved.
Our mission was simple: to entertain with balloons and facepaint! Before this I (Dave) didn’t realise that something like this could be done at events and certainly didn’t think it could be done through volunteering. Sam had done similar things before at local events, and I had volunteered quite a lot looking after children and people with disabilities so this was definitely a step up. The application process on the v website was straightforward and so here we are on the bigvbus presenting ourselves as the act “Miss Bubble’s Balloon Modelling” which the masculine part of our act, Dave, is ever so pleased about…!
Balloons and facepainting proved very popular with every person in the audience, but most importantly, it was good fun and spread the word about volunteering and the good it can do!
The beatboxer and the freestyle footballer were incredible to watch and work alongside, accentuating the already fantastic atmosphere that everyone enjoyed. In a nutshell we would really recommend it, not only for the wonderful message being promoted, but because it is just pure good fun!
Now to enjoy the rest of T4!!!
Dave & Sam xx
Hello, I’m at T4 On The Beach on a big, purple bus.
Today has been an awesome time volunteering as a photographer for the Summer of Give scheme, down in beautiful Weston-super-Mare. I particularly enjoyed waking up at 5am, having only had a few hours sleep the night before (I was really excited you see!) As soon as I arrived at the festival, I was shocked by the mass amount of people here and also a bit scared at the amount of seagulls which seemed to be hovering very close to our heads.
When I finally found the bigvbus I got stuck into taking photos right away. The atmosphere was buzzing with many festival goers who seemed to be particularly interested in Dave and Sam’s balloon modelling. I attempted to get amongst the crowd and take a few shots of the live acts – this proved difficult, only being 5ft 2, but I did the best I could!
The definite highlight of the festival so far has been watching Jedward on stage. Not for their talents but when one of them (I don’t know which one – they’re both the same to me) fell on stage and injured his foot! He then proceeded to continue the act on one foot, hopping around the stage, before jumping into the crowd. Truly hilarious, poor guy…
When I applied for volunteering with vinspired, I had no idea volunteering could involve absolutely anything you wanted. I didn’t even think they would consider my application, but here I am, at T4 on the Beach for free, doing something I really enjoy and I would highly recommend it!
So, there we have it, another festival done and dusted but the Summer Of Give is far from over – we’ve got loads more still to come so keep your eyes peeled to our Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date on all our festival antics and don’t forget to check out more of Megan’s awesome photos from T4OTB HERE!
To find out more about the Summer Of Give and other festivals you’ll be able to catch our bigvbus at this summer have a peek HERE.
It’s that time of year…The sun’s finally come out to play and the summer holidays are right around the corner – at last! With loads of sunshine (fingers crossed!) and lots of new found free time on your hands the big question now is what to do with it? Well, this is where v can help…We’ve got tons of fantastic outdoor opportunities to sink your teeth into this summer! Catch some rays, enjoy the great weather and make a real difference in your community.
With recent figures showing youth unemployment to be up by a shocking 11,000 since January not only is this the perfect opportunity to get out and keep active through the lazy summer months but also a chance to really boost up your CV and increase your chances of beating the crunch. James Caan from Dragon’s Den explains,
“Getting involved in volunteering over the summer and throughout the year can be a real asset to any young person’s progression. Volunteering can help you build vital skills, whilst doing something you enjoy, and is considered a huge asset when applying for higher education or work. By getting involved in volunteering you are taking a step in forging your own future, whilst giving something back to the community. It is something I believe every young person should look into.”
Last but not least with only a few days left to apply for the Summer Of Give we’ve just launched our fantastic Summer Of Give playlist on Spotify (with the help of your track suggestions!) which should provide the perfect soundtrack for your summer – have a listen HERE! Don’t worry if your tunes weren’t selected the first time round we’ll constantly be updating so keep emailing over your requests to firstname.lastname@example.org to get them featured!
Last Thursday, I and fellow v20 members Chris, Sonali and Vanessa were lucky enough to stroll into Portcullis House, Parliament to showcase v’s work alongside other volunteering organsations at the National Council for Voluntary Youth Services reception, in association with the All Party Parliamentary Group on Youth Affairs – what a mouthful. Two hours of sharing experiences with other young volunteers, making contacts and scouting for MPs, it was a fantastic experience.
The committee room was small and the room was full to its brim – a testament to dispel the myth that adults don’t care about young people.It was my first time networking with so many people. It was really inspiring and great to see so many people out to see the work of young volunteers.The event started off with a speech by Natascha Engel MP (Chair of the APPGYA), who talked about the issues young people, volunteers in particular, face today. Shortly after, three young people showcased their volunteering success and their experiences but one really stood out to me.
Peter, a Young Ambassador for the Princes Trust, spoke about his hardships after immigrating from Nigeria and how he overcame personal problems by volunteering in his community with the Princes Trust and contacted his local MP. He subsequently managed to do a years work shadowing with Nick Hurd. Nick Hurd is the newly-appointed Minister for Civil Society and he also spoke. His speech underlined a message about ‘big society’ and pledges to make volunteering easier. Mr Hurd spoke about the desire to consult communities, including young people on how to make volunteering better. Though, I lost track the number of times ‘big society’ was said on the night and Mrs Engle later refrained from using the term!
Then, the event kicked off. We had our stand with v stuff and began to network with many of organisations present. Then slowly, MPs drifted in. We spoke to James Morris MP and Nick Hurd MP discussing volunteering and future of v. v20 member Vanessa discussed her vcashpoint project with him and he was deeply impressed. We also talked briefly to Tim Loughton, the Childrens Minister.
Then came along Lisa Nandy MP, newly elected to represent Wigan, not far from where I live. She wandered over to our desk and I started talking to her about her v, and her previous work at the Children’s Society. Then, we
managed to discover we were both born, lived and studied in Bury. Small world, isn’t it? Before ending our 10 minute conversation, she offered to put pressure on the Government to keep supporting the work of v and said she would ask a question in Parliament on my behalf; this made me feel very proud that I successfully networked and lobbied an MP for the first time. She also offered me to do work placement at her office. It truly shows young people have enormous influence and power, contrary to popular belief. We can do it!
I believe politicians do want to hear from us and it’s up to you to let them know. Email your local MP, tell them about your views and issues, and get involved locally.
Simon Hughes, the new deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats came, in spectacular fashion with 10 minutes before the event ended and made a small speech with a large effect on me. He talked about local participation, whether in schools or colleges and urged MPs to offer work experience to young people. He he also talked about action now, not in the future. He urged young people to get involved now and get involved in politics as politics affects everyone and everything. He’s right and I echo his message.
I really enjoyed the event, it brought us out of our shells and got us speaking to the politicians and other young people and only encouraged us to get involved even more.
Click here to see more photos of the event. Bye for now.
Hey guys! So here we are still at the Isle of Wight festival 2010 for Summer of Give! We had an awesome day of volunteering madness on the bigvbus yesterday, and we all headed off to see Florence and the Machine and Jay Z, but today’s a new day, and with a new day, comes a new load of volunteers and a new blog! Woop woop! Today we have got Dan telling us his impressions of volunteering after spending 2 days with the Summer of Give team.
Isle of Wight Festival 2010.
Dan’s blog. Saturday 12th June.
I was originally roped into volunteering for v by my friend, and in all honesty was apprehensive. I had all sorts of expectations and preconceptions about volunteering, that were immediately extinguished the moment I arrived. It doesn’t have to involve anything you’re uncomfortable with, or breaking your back picking up litter. Volunteering can be interesting, it can be completely personable and suited to each individuals skills and interests, and most importantly, it can be surprisingly rewarding!
Personally, my passion is writing and I’m lucky to have been given the chance to volunteer and write about vinspired. But the wide range of skills on show prove how inspiring and involving it can be. From Sam and Sam performing their unique acoustic versions of S-Club’s ‘Don’t Stop Moving’ and George Harrison’s ‘Here Comes the Sun’ to the vinspired Climate Squad, helping raise awareness about climate change by encouraging festival-goers to power light bulbs, laptops and mobile phones by cycling their specially adapted exercise bike. Their aim is to recruit 16-25 year old volunteers and train them up to run carbon-cutting projects in their own communities.
On the other side of the bus The Physics Busters Claire and Fliss were amazing everyone, particularly the ever enthusiastic Theone with the physics of non-Newtonian fluids, or, the custard trick to laymen!
The star of the day was the enigmatic beat boxer Bass6. Performing in front of the bigvbus he amazed crowds with his versions of hits such as Benny Benassi’s ‘Satisfaction’ before he and Theon, a DJ, got the crowd going with ‘No Woman No Cry’.
Joined by Skinny Lister, an acoustic folk band from Greenwich. They attracted a crowd with their performance, culminating in a rousing sing-a-long rendition of iconic folk song ‘South Australia’. I spoke to Lorna, vocalist and Ukulele player for the band. She said they wanted to come and perform at the bigvbus after seeing it at a previous event, and, having volunteered herself in the past, she understands “how inspiring it can be.”
I spoke to v20 member Chris, who has been with v since it began back in 2006. He told me he started volunteering as a way of gaining work experience while at university, and didn’t imagine he’d still be doing it 5 years later! In his own words, after he’d joined v he didn’t want to leave; “because it’s so rewarding”.
It’s only June and it’s only the beginning of the Summer of Give. Have a look at the upcoming opporunities and get involved. Head to www.vinspired.com.
To apply for Summer of Give, head to the website.
For more pictures and updates from the Summer of Give project, go to the Facebook page.
It’s that time of year, summer is upon us and festival fever is set to sweep the country once again…
Want to join in the action on this summers hottest festivals for free? v have the solution! We’ve got a whole heap of great opportunities and all we require is a little of your time and skills! Just in case you haven’t already heard about them (where have you been?!) here’s a catch up of some of the great festival projects we have on this summer!
Whether your talent lies in music, art, dance, photography, presenting or just lending a hand – we are looking for a team of young, dynamic volunteers to get involved and give.
The more spectacular, the more exciting, the more creative your volunteering idea, the more chance you’ve got of joining us! Here are some of the Festivals we’re still recruiting for:
Relentless Boardmasters on 4th – 8th August
V Festival on 20th – 22nd August
Creamfields on 28th – 29th August
For more info on Summer Of Give and how you can get involved click HERE.
v team up with Coca-Cola to give all you creative, eco conscious volunteers the opportunity to help build amazing festival gardens created purely from recycled waste! Help build sculptures by encouraging festival-goers to recycle their drinks cans/bottles for Coke giveaways and spread the great word of volunteering in exchange for FREE tickets. We’re still recruiting for the following festivals now, so get in there quick:
Sonisphere 30th July – 1st August
Bloodstock 13th – 15th August
V Festival 20th – 22nd August
Creamfields 28th – 29th August
With festival season almost in full swing we suggest you jump in now before it’s too late! Find out more about Live Positively and how you can join in HERE.
If you fancy checking out the sort of things you will be getting up to if you join us, why not catch up with vJemima and the volunteers who will be tweeting, Facebooking and Blogging from the Isle of Wight this weekend! See ya there!
As many of you may be aware this week is officially national Volunteers’ Week!
Volunteers’ week is an annual event founded by Volunteer England to highlight the amazing contribution that millions of volunteers make across the UK and encourage more people to get involved. During the week (1st – 7th June) loads of award ceremonies and parties will be held to celebrate the contribution of volunteers around the country and it’s also a great opportunity for those of you who haven’t tried it yet to find out more about volunteering and perhaps even give it a go!
Volunteers’ Week kicked off to a fantastic start yesterday with a ten minute feature on GMTV. Today, many of may have seen the double page spread that popped up in the Metro speaking to various members of the v team to find out about the benefits of volunteering and highlighting examples of some of the great opportunities that we promote – everything from Cyber Counselling to radio DJing!
For more information on Volunteers’ Week have a peek at the official website here.
At the heart of Anatomy of Youth, the new report by v and Demos, is a set of youth portraits – each providing a snap shot of how young people are confronting the challenges and issues that face their generation.
In his foreword to the report, David Willetts MP – recently made Minister for Universities and Science – said he ‘welcomed this publication which looks at the younger generation from a fresh perspective. We hear the voice of young people themselves’. David Willetts’s endorsement is particularly pleasing given his own work looking at the relationship between the generations, most recently in his book, ‘The Pinch: How the Baby Boomers Took Their Children’s Future – And How They Can Give it Back’.
To coincide with the launch of Anatomy of Youth last week we heard from v’s advisory board, v20, who produced insightful takes on the report’s key themes; digital identity, effective citizens, new families, changing communities, and climate change.
v is proud to act as a strong advocate for young people, so too are the many hundreds of organisations we fund and work with. A great example is ITV Fixers, which this week launched the London part of their national roll out. Fixers are young people aged between 16 and 25 who identify an issue of concern and with practical help and guidance, ‘fix’ it. The range of projects is impressive, as is the energy and commitment of the young people involved.
ITV Fixers is run by the Public Service Broadcasting Trust (PSBT) with the support from v through its Match Fund. Given the Trust’s unique relationship with ITV, Fixers are given a platform to get their voice heard by a large audience in the early evening regional news programme, and to follow their progress through the online channel ITV Fixers. Since its launch, over 11 hours of programming has been broadcast showcasing Fixer’s projects. A great assault on the negative perception of young people. And just one of the ways v and its partners are enabling young people to contribute to the causes and communities they care about, particularly those who are new to volunteering and those from hard to reach or disadvantaged groups.
From festivals to living without power, v has made summer the time to give. The Summer of Give Campaign is offering 18-25 year olds all over England the chance to get a free ticket to some of the UK’s biggest festivals in return for just four hours of their time showcasing their talents. Volunteers can get involved by pitching to showcase a special talent on the bigvbus. Aspiring DJ’s and bands could hit the top deck of the bigvbus and play a warm up festival set while promising photographers and writers snap, blog and tweet the festival scene. Graffiti artists and dancers could even hold master classes on-board. For those who aren’t sure that they have a special talent, v has whole load of spaces for Promotional Volunteers at each Festival who will help to spread the word about volunteering and in return, will receive their festival ticket for free.
★ Isle of Wight Festival on 11th – 13th June.
★ T4 On the Beach on 4th July
★ Relentless Boardmasters on 4th – 8th August
★ V Festival on 20th – 22nd August
★ Creamfields on 28th – 29th August
For those young people who want to save the world, protect the environment AND enjoy the madness of one of the UK’s top music festivals, v have teamed up with Coca Cola and RECOUP to launch the Live Positively Campaign. After a study found that packaging was the biggest part of a drink’s carbon footprint, v and Coca Cola have set up this project to educate and encourage everyone to recycle at music events (and everywhere else), by taking a more creative view of recycling.
On another eco-note, Npower and v have launched No Power Hour, a new campaign to encourage children to find alternative, fun, eco-friendly ways to spend their time, particularly during the sunny summer months. Npower are giving 16-25 year olds in Birmingham, Nottingham, Newcastle and Leeds the opportunity to get involved in a range of activities in local primary schools inspiring young children take part in a range of exciting, creative and outdoor activities.
And if none of that gets young people giving, they can still visit vinspired.com for a whole range of other volunteering opportunities this summer, including a special section for Volunteers’ Week (1-7 June 2010).
v has always been about pushing boundaries, trying new approaches and injecting creativity wherever and whenever we can. This is particularly true of our approach to evaluation.
We wanted to buck the trend of ‘post-mortem’ evaluation and heed the advice of experts, such as those at New Philanthropy Capital who advocate that “charities need to improve the way they measure, demonstrate and communicate impact”.
In the absence of a central approach to measurement and evaluation, v’s preference was for a model that would enable us to learn from our programmes, whilst they were still active, and make changes to improve the experience of our funded network and the young people they engage.
As an organisation committed to evaluation and learning v has applied insights from previous grants rounds into practical improvements for our most recently funded organisations, but by choosing a formative approach, we have gone one step further, providing the organisation with a rigorous and independent evaluation.
The interim findings of this process were launched this week, Formative Evaluation of v, The National Young Volunteers’ Service.
Overall the evaluation shows that v and its funded network are achieving notable outcomes, for example exceeding the targets set for it for the number of youth volunteering opportunities and supporting a positive force for change in the youth sector (p54). More significantly it identifies that we have engaged some of the hardest to reach young people. “There is strong evidence”, the report concludes, “that v funded volunteering engaged a “greater diversity and more socially excluded young people than is normally the case” (p1).
While there are successes to celebrate, the evaluation also indicates areas for improvement for v, its funded network and government.
v is taking forward the recommendations and has created an action plan to tackle the implications raised by the Evaluation report and we are committed to continuing to raise the bar in the provision of youth volunteering.
There is also learning within the report for our funded network, for the wider sector and for government and we hope they share our zeal for improvement. The detailed impact of v and its network (2008-2011) will be reflected in the final report in June 2011. We have a unique opportunity to take stock of what we have collectively achieved thus far and make every effort to deliver more.
Terry Ryall, v’s Chief Executive, commented “I’m naturally delighted by all the positive findings of what v has and its partners have achieved in just four year. But I’m equally excited about the areas of improvement for v and the voluntary sector, as we take these forward for an even better future for all.”