From Force Volunteer to Full Time Employee – Read Victim Liaison Officer Jackie Glackin’s Story
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As part of the National Volunteers Week, Victim Liaison Officer Jackie Glackin who joined the Force as a volunteer in 2018, tells us her experience…
Jackie became a full-time employee at Cleveland Police after 8 months of volunteering. Thanks to her hard work and dedication, the Force would like to highlight her role to demonstrate the importance of volunteering and the career path it can lead you on.
Q: What was your role as a volunteer, what did it entail and how many hours did you volunteer for?
A: I was a Special Constable previously for Cleveland Police and resigned due to a change in my personal circumstances. I wanted to volunteer in a different capacity, so I applied for a volunteer’s position which I was successful in getting in 2018.
At the time I was working for Harbour Domestic Abuse Services in Hartlepool working Monday – Thursday. I was a qualified IDVA (Independent Domestic Violence Advisor) and I was already fully vetted, and NICHE trained (a police computer system) due to other elements of my Harbour role.
I knew about the Clare’s Law Disclosures, as at times I attended joint visits with police officers. I was aware that there was quite a backlog of disclosures and I asked if I could volunteer my Fridays to help reduce the amount that were outstanding. This was arranged through the Volunteer and Operational Managers.
Q: What enticed you to become a volunteer in the first place?
A: As I already worked in domestic abuse I was aware of the stretched resources that Cleveland Police had. I was happy to provide any admin role that would help.
I have volunteered in different roles since I was 18 and I believe it is a good way to give something back to communities that are in need of support. Volunteers are an essential part of society and many organisations would not be able to run as effectively without their volunteers.
Volunteering gives me a sense of purpose and has helped build my confidence and has offered training that I would not normally be able to access, which helped me to build a solid CV.
Q: How did you move from volunteer to staff member?
A: The role of Victim Liaison Officer was advertised by the Force. I applied and to my delight I was offered the job after completing a presentation and attending an interview.
I am certain that the volunteering I had done and the fact that I was already NICHE trained helped the Force to make the decision to offer me the job.
I spoke in depth of my volunteering at the interview as it was evidence that I had a passion for working in domestic abuse.
Q: If someone was considering becoming a volunteer, what advice would you give them based on your own experience?
I would advise them to put a lot of thought into volunteering and to do research into what the role involves. I would always encourage people to talk to other volunteers to manage their expectations of the roles available.
Cleveland Police Volunteers Management are very supportive and want to match volunteers to the roles that will give them the most satisfaction and the roles that they are best suited to.
Qualities like time management, effective communication and flexibility go a long way as a volunteer and the appreciation from Cleveland Police is often evident whether it is from the police officers/staff or in their regular bulletins.