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ILM launches new volunteer management qualification as part of commitment to third sector

Two students from Yorkshire have become the first individuals to be awarded the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) new volunteer management qualification.

Parminder Kaur and Sarah Maligranda, both trained by the Bradford-based housing charity Key House, were the first to complete the UK’s first ever suite of volunteer management qualifications, designed to allow managers to effectively plan, organize and monitor voluntary workers.

June Hawkins, Head of Development at ILM said: “This exciting new suite of qualifications underlines ILMs increasing commitment to the third sector. ILM is proud to have worked with the Voluntary Sector National Training Organization (UK Workforce Hub) to develop these NVQ’s which will allow organizations to improve the skills of their staff who manage volunteers.”

A recent study “Improving Our Skills” by the Voluntary Sector National Training Organization (VSNTO), found a sector skills shortage in management training, specifically those managing volunteers and the sector was deemed a priority in terms of development requirements.

ILM is the first awards organization to address the leadership and management needs of the voluntary sector directly.

Volunteer management can struggle to maintain a productive working environment in which their teams feel valued, happy and motivated. ILM’s new NVQ’s have been designed to equip managers with the core competences needed to address critical issues within the sector. With input from across the voluntary sector the ILM has gone a long way to easing the issues and enhancing the working environment

Andy Winter, Director of Learning & Consultancy for YMCA England commented: “These new qualifications from ILM are a timely potential solution to those managers across the voluntary sector who are tasked with managing, motivating and involving volunteers in their organization’s work.”

When Key House heard that the Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) was launching the Management of Volunteers NVQ, they decided to apply for accreditation to offer this new qualification as soon as possible. There are many volunteers operating within the Voluntary Sector who are managed by individuals who have plenty of practical experience of management but lack a relevant qualification; this was the ideal opportunity to offer them the chance to gain such a qualification.

Dave Coleman, Training Manger at Key House and the NVQ assessor, stated: I relished the opportunity to be the first to assist our candidates through this new NVQ. The standards are well written and easy to understand and the evidence specifications give the assessor a detailed breakdown of the types of evidence required to prove the candidates competence in achieving the NVQ. I thoroughly enjoyed working with these 2 candidates, as both were experienced managers of volunteers, which made the task of guiding them through the NVQ much simpler.

Sarah Maligranda, one of the candidates said: “I have enjoyed working on the NVQ. I was well aware of the process and how assessment was undertaken prior to commencement so this was helpful. Having a tutor who was confident in my ability was good and Dave increased my confidence if I lacked it. The level 4 NVQ is aimed at the right level for my peers. It stretches knowledge and understanding and assists in the application of working practices. It helps individuals re-evaluate their practices, which is good.”

Parminder Kaur, the other candidate for the NVQ said: “I found the NVQ process very useful. It has helped me to work more effectively with volunteers and helped to identify my weaknesses. During completion of the units there were certain areas that I lacked in. I took these on board and reviewed my method of working in certain processes. Overall I now have gained a nationally recognized qualification to prove that I have the skills and experience to effectively manage volunteers.”

Chris Mitchell

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