Read about Katie Cobb's volunteer experience with Humberside Police and what employment opportunities has been opened up to her because of it, in her own words:
Katie, what roles do you cover as a volunteer?
I have covered many roles including cycle race marshalling, helping at independent advisory group meetings to meet and greet guests, but my main role has been in custody at Clough Road.
Why do you volunteer for the police?
As part of my University degree, 70 hours of voluntary/work experience were mandatory in order for me to complete my degree. Humberside Police were recruiting volunteers and as the subject of my degree was Criminology and Criminal Justice, the Police seemed the perfect opportunity to fulfil my voluntary hours.
The main reason for volunteering for me, was to gain as much experience as possible to help me further my career, which this has done. It is important to remember that whilst volunteering can be a foot in the door, volunteering doesn’t automatically mean an individual would walk straight into paid employment.
I have made many friends and met great colleagues along the way. I have also been offered many paid job opportunities. The support from staff and senior members of staff has been fantastic.
How has volunteering impacted your life?
Volunteering has impacted my life in many great ways! I am able to volunteer as and when is convenient to coincide with family and university life and has given me great opportunities such as various paid job roles for once I had finished my degree.
When I started my degree, my intention was to go back to the Prison service and progress to higher job roles, joining the police had never actually been a career intention of mine. However, once I started volunteering for the Police, my career prospects changed and the Police is now the career I want to progress in.
Without volunteering, I would not have had the opportunities I have had. Thanks to fantastic Inspectors and Superintendents, I have had the opportunity to shadow job roles in various department such as PPT (Prisoner Processing Team), PVP (Protecting Vulnerable People) and CJU (Criminal Justice Unit), which gave me an insight into future job roles and career prospects.
Would you recommend volunteering, and if so, why?
I would definitely recommend volunteering, as explained above, the opportunities which can arise (although these are not guaranteed), give an insight into Humberside Police as a force, the various job roles (many of which are unknown) and what these roles entail.
If a career in the Police is what you would like to do in the future, volunteering is a great way to understand what the Police do, as it's not like what we see on TV!
An example of this is my own son. He wanted to join the Police as an Officer. I recommended he join the Humberside Special Constabulary as a volunteer to get experience within the role, which will help him decide if the route of a Police Officer is the one he wants to take, before committing himself to a paid role. He may love it, but he also may not! He has applied and is looking forward to this role to obtain experience and to help him make his decision!
To find out more about volunteering with Humberside Police, please visit their Time2Volunteer Partner page here.