11th Dec 2018

Aspire Learning, Support and Wellbeing is a community interest company set up in 2012.  Aspire provides a holistic approach to the needs of women, primarily from our women only centre in Chester-le-Street.  We offer a range of learning opportunities, one to one support services, support groups, health and wellbeing initiatives and volunteering opportunities to build women’s self confidence, self esteem and aspirations.  Women say they feel safe and at home at Aspire and many make lasting friendships.

All our services are supported by our onsite crèche for women with caring responsibilities of pre-school aged children.  Our services are free.

Achievement of the County Durham Volunteering Kite Mark which is facilitated by Durham Communtiy Action demonstrates that Aspire meets standards to overcome barriers to volunteering, and recognises the value of recruiting and retaining volunteers. The Kite Mark shows an organisation manages a volunteering programme where volunteers receive a high quality, positive volunteering experience.

Abby Thompson, Volunteering Development Manager said

”Durham Community Action were delighted to present Aspire with the County Durham Volunteer Kite Mark award. Volunteers from Aspire played an active role in giving their views as part of the Kite Mark assessment process. Volunteers commented on the support and direction that they receive from staff at Aspire which they found invaluable and also the training which was always interesting and challenging”.

Aspire relies heavily on our volunteers in particular to deliver our support services and wellbeing initiatives.  These volunteers are known as our Supporting Sisters’.  Their contributions were recognised earlier in the year by Durham County Council Community Learning at the Festival of Learning event where they scooped the “Unsung Hero award” and ultimately the overall Festival of learning award.  2 of our volunteers received individual highly commended awards.

 Janice Rokni Director said

“We are immensely proud, Aspire wouldn’t be what it is or where it is today without the tireless effects of all our volunteers who support all aspects of the organisation. They are very much at the heart of what we do and make such a difference to the lives of the women they support”

Volunteers at Aspire said:

“I started volunteering and getting more involved at Aspire, it has completely changed my life.  I started feeling I had a purpose again.”

“I do a lot of volunteering, so that we can reach as many women as possible and give them hope.”

“Volunteering has given me the confidence to approach people, something I was completely lacking.”

“Through volunteering I feel confident, part of society again , after having a family, like the old me.”

If you are interested in finding out more about volunteering opportunities, please contact our volunteer coordinator Val Kilner who would love to hear from you.

For further information email, contact 0191 3891504 or visit their website

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