you can help bristol autism support

Volunteering with Bristol Autism Support

Volunteering is incredibly rewarding. Volunteering with BAS allows you to use your experience of looking after your own autistic child to help others. It’s a wonderful way to make new friends. You will learn new skills as well as learn about services and support you didn’t know about. Our volunteers enjoy perks such as free entry into some of our events and activities. We are happy to provide references for our volunteers as well. Volunteering can be a great way to ease back into work after a break, or add new skills to your CV.

Volunteer opportunities

We urgently need volunteers to help us run our many support group meetings. We say, ‘come to a support group meeting when you need support, and when you don’t need support, come along to give support‘! We are also grateful for autistic adults who can come along and give their perspective to parents. Here are a list of options for volunteering:

Evening meetings
General support group meetings for any parents and carers of autistic children
Emersons Green on 10th April and 17th July from 8-10pm
Bedminster on 21st March, 20th June and 19th September from 8-10pm
Set up / clear up: set out chairs, set up the tea and coffee making, put out biscuits, put out leaflets and things for sale
Greeters: greet people as they enter the building, make name tags, make hot drinks, help people feel at ease
Meeting hosts: welcomes the group, goes through housekeeping (toilets, fire exits, etc.) introduces the guest speaker. After the speaker goes through a round of introductions of group attendees before group breaks for hot drinks and general chat.
Requirements: none, other than to be friendly and welcoming, and if  you are the host be comfortable speaking to a group.

Newcomer meetings
For parents / carers of children with autism pre-assessment, or going through assessment or who have recently (in the past year) had a diagnosis for their child
Withywood on 26th February, 20th May and 15th July from 10am – noon
Yate on 9th May and 12th September from 10am – noon
Set up / clear up: set out chairs, set up the tea and coffee making, put out biscuits, put out leaflets and things for sale
Greeters: greet people as they enter the building/room, make name tags, make hot drinks, help people feel at ease
Meeting hosts: welcomes the group, goes through housekeeping (toilets, fire exits, etc.) Goes through a round of introductions of group attendees before group has a general chat.
General volunteers: on hand for specific questions, offer advice on areas you have experience of, offer encouragement
Requirements: volunteers for these meetings must be at least three years into living with autism (have a good understanding of autism, DLA and other benefits, the EHCP process, etc.), and to be friendly and welcoming, and if  you are the host be comfortable speaking to a group.

Advice drop-ins
Drop-in sessions where parents / carers of autistic children meet 1:1 with a volunteer to talk through specific issues.
Withywood on 4th March, 24th June and 2nd October from 10am – noon
Kingswood on 29th April, 2nd September and 2nd December from 10am – 2pm
Set up / clear up: set out chairs, set up the tea and coffee making, put out biscuits, put out leaflets and things for sale
Greeters: greet people as they enter the building/room, make name tags, make hot drinks, help people feel at ease. This is a bit of a triage role as you may speak to the person to determine which volunteer would be best for their needs.
Advice volunteers: meet 1:1 with attendees, answer specific questions, offer advice on areas you have experience of, offer encouragement, signpost to other services.
Requirements: volunteers for these meetings must be at least three years into living with autism (have a good understanding of autism, DLA and other benefits, the EHCP process, etc.), and to be friendly and welcoming and comfortable working with a wide variety of people. Training is offered for this role. You are not expected to know everything about autism – this is a general support service.

Coffee mornings
Casual get-togethers for parents and carers of autistic children
Westbury-on-Trym on 13th March, 12th June and 11th September from 10-11am
Keynsham on 3rd April, 3rd July and 6th November from 10-11am

Host: puts BAS sign on the table, sets up a tab for drinks, greets people as they enter, generally looks after the group, chats to people present (anywhere from 4-15 people).
Requirements: volunteers must be friendly and welcoming and comfortable talking with a wide variety of people. A small cash float is given to cover the hot drinks at these meetings so this volunteer will need to be responsible with money.

 

Can you help?

If you would like to volunteer for one or more of the above sessions, please email info@bristolautismsupport.com or ring Kate on 07825 616094. You do not need to commit to all sessions at one location – even just volunteering to help at one meeting would be a huge help!

 

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