Maternity Mates provide practical and emotional support to pregnant women.

Please click here for further information.

Support starts from the 5th month of pregnancy, through to birth and the early weeks of motherhood.

Maternity Mates "Stories of Encounters" Booklet - download your copy here

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Events

Become A Maternity Mate

The WHFS (Women's Health & Family Services) volunteer Maternity Mates™ project is an exciting and rewarding scheme that provides accredited training to volunteers, enabling them to support women through the latter stages of pregnancy, childbirth and the early weeks of motherhood.

How to enrol on the Maternity Mates programme

WHFS hold open days several times per year to recruit Maternity Mates and where potential volunteers can meet the Maternity Mates team.  It's an opportunity to speak with WHFS staff and experienced Maternity Mates, as well as meet mums we have helped.

The next open days will be scheduled soon. Check back for details here.

The application form is available here (selection option A). Interviews are held on a rolling basis throughout the year. 

If you have any question, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

During the open day, you will hear what it's like to be a Maternity Mate and what we expect from volunteers.

Here's how Maternity Mates see their role:

"It has been an honour and a privilege to support women as a Maternity Mate. I have loved developing a strong connection with the mums and helping them find their own voice and confidence."

"It was a very special experience for me being a Maternity Mate - it was a learning curve, it was positive and exciting. I have used it as a stepping stone and as a tool for my self-education."

"It has been so great to help women and feel like I am making a difference. I've also learned so much and am excited about my future opportunties."


What we expect from Maternity Mates

We expect a high degree of professionalism from our Maternity Mates - this is a very rewarding role that makes a real and lasting difference to the lives of the people we help.  These are much sought-after roles and we have a limited number of vacancies each year. 

Maternity Mates can expect to support up to 2 mums at any one time, depending on their experience.  The length of time each Maternity Mate spends with a mum will vary, but is usually around 2-3 hours per week.  Maternity Mates are expected to:

  • Volunteer for at least 6 months after they have completed their training
  • Support at least 4 mums
  • Attend at least 2 births

All potential volunteers to must be able to make this commitment when applying to become a Maternity Mate.


DBS checks (criminal records checks)

All Maternity Mates undergo DBS checks and need a good command of written and spoken English, as competent record keeping is essential.


Training

Maternity Mates undergo an accredited training course to Level 3 with the Open College Network (OCN), which also counts as 9 points towards the Access to Midwifery course, Doula Skills & Breastfeeding Support (Level 3).  WHFS also provides on-going support following this initial training. 

The Maternity Mates training course consists of the following Modules:

WHFS, along with online casino players, help provide volunteer training to support women in the last stages of pregnancy, childbirth and the first weeks of motherhood. Several times a year, WHFS recruits maternity assistants among highest payout online casino australia players. This allows online casino players to learn a lot about the schemes from WHFS staff and experienced players who have been involved in charity work for years.

 

  • Preparing for the Birth - 2 days
  • Breastfeeding - 2 days
  • Child Protection - 1 day
  • Domestic Violence Awareness - 1 day

The following Modules all last half a day each:

  • Induction (including DBS checks)
  • Antenatal Role
  • The Birth
  • Tours of maternity hospitals (currently cancelled due to COVID-19)
  • Postnatal Role
  • Course Summary and Next Steps
  • Written Test Presentation

Once volunteers have successfully completed their training and DBS check, they will be ready to help their first mum and baby.

Maternity Mates is the registered trademark of WHFS (Women's Health & Family Services)

Become a Diabetes Befriender

The WHFS (Women's Health & Family Services) Diabetes Befriending project provides practical support to people with Type 2 diabetes, enabling and empowering them to manage their condition more confidently and effectively.  Please click here to read more about the project.

What is a Diabetes Befriender?

A Diabetes Befriender is trained by WHFS to support people with Type 2 diabetes living in Tower Hamlets to manage their condition.  This is a highly rewarding role and Befrienders make a significant difference to the health and wellbeing of the people they help.

Who can become a Diabetes Befriender?

  • You must be a resident of Tower Hamlets
  • You must have direct knowledge of Type 2 diabetes, either as a patient or have a family member with the condition
  • If you have a diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes, you must be able to manage your condition before you can enrol as a Diabetes Befriender

Training provided by WHFS

  • In-house training on Type 2 diabetes and working with diabetics
  • Induction training on volunteering for WHFS
  • On-going support

You will also receive

  • Training as above, as well as access to further training opportunities
  • On-going group supervision
  • Individual support where necessary

What is expected of a Diabetes Befriender?

We ask all potential volunteers to make sure they are willing and able to make the following commitment when applying to become a Diabetes Befriender:

  • Volunteer for a minimum of 6 months
  • Volunteer for at least 2 hours per week
  • Attend training where necessary
  • Abide by all WHFS policies and procedures on equal opportunities, diversity, and confidentiality 

DBS Checks

  • All Diabetes Befrienders undergo DBS checks (criminal record checks).

How to enrol as a Diabetes Befriender

  • WHFS recruits and trains Befrienders throughout the year
  • Please contact us (details below) for an application form
  • We will invite you for an informal interview once we have received the completed application form

Contact

For further information, please contact:

Marium Islam - Project Worker
T:  020 7377 8725
M: 07960 327 107
E:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Become a Cancer Awareness Peer Supporter

The WHFS (Women's Health & Family Services) Cancer Awareness project aims to increase public awareness (including risk factors and symptoms) of 3 specific cancers – lung, bowel and breast cancer.

What is a Cancer Awareness Peer Supporter?

A Peer Supporter is trained by WHFS to:

  • Assist in conducting and recording research with community groups for inclusion in the project's evaluation report
  • Deliver sessions on raising awareness of cancer symptoms within the community

Training provided by WHFS:

  • Awareness of the symptoms of bowel, breast & lung cancer 
  • Group facilitation and listening skills
  • Research - recording of participants' information and feedback 
  • On-going support

Volunteers are then supported by WHFS to:

  • Organise sessions in community settings, such as: lunch & befriending groups, school coffee mornings, clubs, mosques, churches and GP practices, etc
  • Carry out sessions to improve the awareness of groups who have been identified as having a higher risk of developing cancer 
  • Record information for inclusion in the project's evaluation report, which will be published

You will receive:

  • Training as above, as well as access to further training opportunities 
  • On-going group supervision
  • Individual support where necessary
  • A reference once you complete the project
  • Experience to support applications for college, university and professional qualifications
  • CV, personal development planning & skills-matching to improve employment opportunities 
  • Invitations to WHFS events, campaigns & social events

In return WHFS expects volunteers to:

  • Volunteer for a minimum of 6 months
  • Volunteer for at least 3 hours per week
  • Attend training where necessary
  • Have a good command of written and spoken English, as competent record keeping is essential
  • Abide by all WHFS policies and procedures on equal opportunities, diversity, confidentiality, etc

We ask all potential volunteers to make sure they are willing and able to make this commitment when applying to become a Cancer Awareness Peer Supporter.

DBS Checks

  • All Peer Supporters undergo DBS checks (criminal record checks)

How to enrol as a Cancer Awareness Peer Supporter

  • WHFS hold open days to recruit volunteers
  • Please see the Events page for details on forthcoming Open Days, or contact our team (details below)

Contact

For further information please contact:

Ginny Stuart – Community Health Manager
T:  07960 328 099 / 020 7377 9644
E:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Kadiza Yasmin - Project Worker
T:  020 7377 8725
E:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Become a Happy Healthy Hearts Befriender

The WHFS (Women's Health & Family Services) Happy Healthy Hearts project supports people at risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) and newly-diagnosed patients by providing the support of WHFS Befriending Volunteers and is funded by the Big Lottery.  Please click here to read more about the project.

What is a Happy Healthy Heart Befriender?

A Befriender is trained by WHFS to:

  • Support patients with CHD to manage their condition
  • Offer help and advice on healthy diets and exercise
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  • Deliver sessions on raising awareness of CHD within the community

Training provided by WHFS:

  • In-house training provided by WHFS
  • Awareness of the symptoms of CHD
  • Research - recording of participants' information and feedback
  • On-going support

Volunteers are then supported by WHFS to:

  • Support CHD patients before, during and after GP and hospital appointments, etc
  • Organise sessions in community settings, such as: lunch & befriending groups, school coffee mornings, clubs, mosques, churches and GP practices, etc
  • Carry out sessions to improve the awareness of groups who have been identified as having a higher risk of developing CHD
  • Record information for inclusion in the project's evaluation report, which will be published

You will receive:

  • Training as above, as well as access to further training opportunities
  • On-going group supervision
  • Individual support where necessary
  • A reference outlining your volunteering experience and training with WHFS
  • Experience to support applications for college, university and professional qualifications
  • Invitations to WHFS events, campaigns & social events

In return WHFS expects volunteers to:

We ask all potential volunteers to make sure they are willing and able to make this commitment when applying to become a Befriender:

  • Volunteer for a minimum of 6 months
  • Volunteer for at least 2 hours per week
  • Attend training where necessary
  • Be able to collect information and carry out record keeping, which is essential for the evaluation of the project
  • Abide by all WHFS policies and procedures on equal opportunities, diversity, and confidentiality

DBS Checks

  • All Befrienders undergo DBS checks (criminal record checks)

How to enrol as a Befriender

  • WHFS hold open days to recruit volunteers - please see the Events page for details or contact our team (details below)

Contact

For further information, please contact:

Marium Islam - Project Worker
E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
T: 020 7377 8725

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