VPA goes Ryder Cup……..well not quite

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We had a great time at PARADISE GOLF Ellie “Tiger” Hayes won the day the Jo “Ballesteros” Fullman and Georgie “Mcllroy” Willisford were in hot pursuit. Everyone had loads of fun no clubs were harmed during this event.

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Joanne Green- Week 9 w/c 23/07/2012

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Working with Business Services on three separate occasions this week gave a boost to my confidence and hopefully, in the long-term, my competence. On one of the Business Services days I went out with and shadowed a staff member to a multi-occupancy social housing managed building, St. Chad’s Centre, to do resource efficiency diagnostic. The building holds a Medical Practice, Police Station, Childcare, Pharmacy, Library and a Regenda reception. I found undertaking the environmental management qualitative primary research interview and walkabout informative, responsible and progressive. Research from working within Business Services this week includes Queen’s Award for Enterprise. This award has four categories: Sustainable Development, Innovation, International Trade and the promotion of enterprise. On the website is a video of an SME owner, Graeme whose video I found really motivating. Being unemployed it’s encouraging to know there is SME growth-support out there from Business Link, Growth Accelerator and Mutual.

Volunteer Project Assistant qualitative and quantitative research includes devising surveys for my peers and the staff to complete and submit to Survey Monkey. From the entries I shall collate and analyze the results to meet the Community Volunteering Qualification.

Attending a webinar Cultural Heritage & Archaeology in EIA gave me an understanding of just how passionate people are of culture and heritage. If I attain a job in a planning department or project manage a consultation I look forward to those points rising again.

Participating in the [Doug] Richard Review for Apprenticeships at Stockport Town Hall National Workshop gave me the opportunity to inform the reviewer of my opinion of how I believe improvements to apprenticeships could be made. Calls for responses are open until 7 September 2012.

Today’s Boarshaw Clough pictures show a greater diversity amongst the insects than I have previously seen.

Joanne Green Week 8- w/c 16/07/2012

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This week is my favourite week so far.

For the Bid Writing project I wrote a budget projection; a new activity for me in a work place. A budget projection is a financial statement with projected costs added to it. At first I was unsure of what projected costs are. After seeing some, on some past applications, they remind me of the housing benefit supplementary payment form but it’s on an excel sheet instead of on an A4 sheet. Incomings, outgoings and show what you need yet are unable to afford. Statistical evidence research for the bid application this week includes Measuring National Well-being and Indices of deprivation.

I had an amazing day working in Business Services researching renewable energy proposals for organisations. Research had me perusing some of my favourite sites: Planning Portal, e-Serve, DECC, English Heritage and Maps. I look forward to a repeat opportunity next week.

On Thursday I sat the IEMA Associates exam at Groundwork Oldham & Rochdale. A special thank you to the IT Team for setting-up the computer for me, it worked great.

Friday was water project workshop delivery day, sampling of temperature, pH, Total Dissolved Solids and Conductivity. For this I created a handbook explaining objectives and what I aim to create with the results. Thank you fellow VPAs for working as a team; it was a pleasure to deliver to you and I look forward to yours.

The pictures are from Boarshaw Clough, our first dry day. To build upon the water sampling the picture illustrate the biochemical cycles water (pond) and carbon (trees, bushes, grasses) and how their energy flows from the producers (pond, trees, bushes and flowers) to the consumers (insects).

Falinge Planters!

The Falinge planters are an exciting new addition to the Falinge estate in Rochdale. 

The Falinge Community Action Team worked hard to get these new planters installed outside the entrance and will help jazz the place up a bit once the flowers have been planted! We’ll be sure to get another snap of the finished result in the next few weeks.

Ellie and Georgie

Cake Thursdays

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This post is a wee bit late but I just had to share the pictures of the fantastic cake made by some of our volunteers on our residential at Brunts Barn in the Peak District. A very important part of the VPA week is ‘cake thursday’ (the day formerly known as cake Friday for previous teams!). Each week a member of the team takes it in turn to bring in a cake for the team meeting. This one was baked by the team after a day of footpath maintenance with the Peak Park Conservation Volunteers.  We have recently been treated to chocolate fudge cake, homemade parkin, rocky road and viennese whirls!

 

Joanne Green- week 7: w/c 09/07/2012

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With Business Services I went to a Groundwork Oldham & Rochdale workshop: Introduction to bid writing / tendering held at Mercure Manchester Norton Grange Hotel & Spa. The two consultants that led the presentations I attended are Ulka, Business Manager of Thornton & Lowe (Tendering) and Becky, Director of Crowberry Consulting (Policy). The expertise these two ladies have of their subject areas is immense and I recommend you contact them if you want tender advice/services or want to check whether your policies illustrate you have the organisational structure to do the job you are tendering for.

The workshop introduced me to ISO 26000, a social responsibility framework. The standard systematically integrates volunteering into any sector organisation with transparency, fairness and application of environmental principles.

At Boarshaw Clough I learnt how to age its trees and identify tree health. The pictures show some environmental damage of last week’s adverse weather, the biological cycling of sediments and flora and fauna.

Oldham Evening Chronicle Placements

Peter, Joe and Ryan the team who paved the way for All That magazine’s success

Thank you to everyone who has applied to take part in the VPA Programme at Oldham Evening Chronicle.
This project is an opportunity for budding journalists to create a magazine aimed at young people in the Oldham area.
Here is a link to the last teams effort which was recently distributed
http://editions.pagesuite.co.uk/openpagesuite.aspx?pubid=3183
We will be holding the interviews next week at the Chron and look forward to welcoming the new team soon!
Jo