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Title: The development of a training programme for child and youth care student volunteers at the Durban University of Technology
Authors: Chetty, Kimberly Ellen 
Keywords: Development;Training programme;Child and youth care;Student volunteers;Durban University of Technology
Issue Date: 30-Nov-2020
Many universities have recruited student volunteers to become involved in
community outreach and service activities to assist non-governmental organisations
and communities. Student volunteers have become important intermediaries,
establishing and embedding bridges between universities and communities, helping
build local communities. Students within the Child and Youth Care Programme at the
Durban University of Technology volunteered at different organisations such as
schools, community centres, children‘s homes and development centres to initiate
volunteer projects that would contribute to these community partners. These projects
included creating food gardens, fundraising initiatives, conducting skills workshops
and assistance with local food drives. Hence, this study sought to understand the
nature of their student volunteer experiences as well as explore the values,
principles and skills used in undertaking their volunteer work. Furthermore, it sought
to determine aspects that underpin a training programme for student volunteers.
A qualitative research methodology was used to guide the study and collect data
from one purposively selected sample, namely the BTech students within the Child
and Youth Care programme at the Durban University of Technology. Data was
collected using semi-structured interviews and a focus group discussion was held
with these fourteen participants. The data was then analysed thematically.
Findings from the study showed that students valued their volunteer projects and
made a connection with the experience they had, being that it enabled social
responsibility and heightened their levels of altruism. In addition, students viewed
themselves as change agents within the community and found volunteering to be a
process of co-learning. The interviews with participants also reinforced the need for
ongoing partnerships between universities and communities and the role each of
these stakeholders play in eliciting and strengthening community engagement.
Furthermore, students highlighted that volunteerism enhances graduate attributes
and prepared them for working in the field.
As students ventured into communities, it was pertinent to discover how these
students could be further supported, equipped and managed, to fulfil their volunteer
role purposively but also to represent the university meaningfully. Together with the data collected, a review of international and local university volunteer programmes
was compiled in order to deduce the most crucial and relevant information needed
for sufficient student training. This facilitated the development of a student volunteer
training handbook which can be used to empower, motivate and recruit future
volunteers within the university.
Submitted in fulfilment of the requirement for the Degree of Masters in Health sciences at the Durban University of Technology, 2020.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Health Sciences)

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