In February 2019, QCSV introduced its first volunteer run employment workshop at Joyceville Institution. The duration of our class is approximately three hours and currently accommodates 20 offenders. Our classes focus on three different areas including resume building, mock interviews/skill development as well as creating a skills portfolio. We also offer individual help to offenders when needed.
Our volunteers are pleased to announce our first workshop quickly reached capacity and required a wait list to accommodate the demand! Our workshops were such a success that they are currently being trialed as a pilot program across other Ontario Institutions. The popularity just highlights the importance of working on skills that can be directly applied once released. We plan to expand to other institutions such as Collins bay in the near future!
Our volunteers accompany the offenders as they do their groceries for the week, offering insight into budgeting, nutrition, and meal prep techniques.
This is an excellent opportunity for the offenders to get experience with a task that will soon become ordinary and mundane upon release, but may at the moment seem daunting and foreign to them.
Art promotes self-discovery and self-expression and provides the offenders with a healthy medium through which they can express themselves.
The class covers famous artists and different art styles -- pen, painting, sketching...etc. -- and is taught by one of our experienced volunteers.
Be it through creating an art work that represents any mood, emotion, or feeling, the act of creating a work of art is very insightful and allows for a deeper understanding of one's emotional state – something that is important for the volunteers and the offenders!
Occasionally, our volunteers will run special events with the offenders. This past holiday season, offenders and volunteers were given the opportunity to create Christmas toys for children at the Kingston Youth Shelter. This was a great way to get everyone in the holiday spirit and to give back to our local community.