Our students’ views on the NHVS
Founded in 1978, the New Hall Voluntary Service (NHVS) has been providing help and support to vulnerable members of the Chelmsford community for over 40 years. The elderly, and children and adults with specific learning difficulties are among the many people who benefit from the work of the NHVS, both on site at New Hall and at venues throughout Chelmsford.
A sense of community spirit is fostered at New Hall School through its Voluntary Service where all students are encouraged to serve the local community. The Preparatory Divisions and Senior Divisions are involved in collecting items for the NHVS Christmas hampers, entertaining visiting groups and helping with fundraising.
From Year 7 students can volunteer in five out of the seven NHVS groups, and during the Trinity Term of Year 8, all Year 8 students become involved in an action group of their choice from the range appropriate to their age. All Senior Divisions students are encouraged to continue their involvement with NHVS by signing up each term for one of the seven groups available to them.
It is hoped that by the time students reach Year 12 they will apply to become NHVS leaders. This can involve contacting visiting guests, liaising with adult supporters, organising younger students and presenting termly reports to the Co-ordinating Committee and adult supporters. It helps the students to develop their leadership skills and it is hoped that it will lead to a lifelong wish to help others.
Parents and friends of New Hall School support these activities in many ways, including working on the Co-ordinating Committee, supporting the Year 12 leaders as adult supporters, driving one of our school minibuses, escorting, supervising and supporting fundraising events.
A Children’s Charity Day Camp for local children is also incorporated into the scheme. Students, helped by adult volunteers, devote time and energy in their summer holidays to give around 25 children from Chelmsford a day filled with new experiences and fun activities at New Hall.
As a member of the teaching staff at New Hall School, volunteering one’s time to have lunch with our local elderly residents provides two very satisfying rewards for me. Firstly, I get to take a break from the busy working week to slow down and share lunch with those who often find this to be one of the few occasions they interact with others. This in itself is very rewarding, as is chatting about topics as diverse as grandchildren, past holidays abroad…and who we think will win Strictly Come Dancing or The Apprentice! Secondly, I cannot deny that it is so very heartening to see the students taking responsibility and developing softer skills of empathy and conscientiousness, then develop into well-rounded, considerate young people who wish to work hard for no other reason than to make others feel a little happier. – Mr D Madge, Sixth Form Head of Year
I have chosen to volunteer as I felt I wanted to give something back to the community and hopefully make a difference to the lives of others. It has given me a sense of achievement and enabled me to interact with some very lovely elderly people who appreciate what we do for them. I feel very valued and part of a great team of volunteers and would have to say, this is the most rewarding and fulfilling job I have taken on. – Mrs A Angell, Parent Volunteer
May I take this chance to say what a fantastic service you offer to our elderly, the trip to spend time with the children and other people is a real lifeline for some of our residents, in times when it’s very difficult to find things that are free for our elderly to do it’s refreshing. – Mrs M Hastings, CHP Housing Care Officer
- NHVS Manager: Mrs Deborah Williamson
- NHVS Chair: Mrs Deborah Williamson
- Finance: Mrs Debbie Came (Head of Finance)
- NHVS Link Governor: Mrs Janis Croom
If you would like to know more about becoming an NHVS Volunteer, please contact Mrs Williamson via firstname.lastname@example.org or 01245 236 112. NHVS welcomes enquiries from Preparatory and Senior Divisions parents and friends of the school.