At SuperGrans we conduct a range of workshops alongside our one-on-one mentoring service. Here is some feedback from our participants -
“I enjoy working as part of a team in the workshops and eating together at the end.”
“The most useful part of the workshop is learning new recipes to try at home by myself”
“I like the team work and interaction and the simple easy to follow instructions.”
“I found all aspects of the workshop useful - I particularly enjoyed learning about raised-bed vegetable gardening.”
“SuperGrans has done a marvellous job helping me to learn new skills – my mentor supported me to learn to cook new recipes. I recommend them to all of my friends.”
“The SuperGrans workshops had a very warm and welcoming environment and I enjoyed coming to sewing.”
Cynthia Landa, our Workshop Coordinator says "SuperGrans workshops are a positive and calm environment where people from all backgrounds can come and learn new skills from our passionate and volunteers. Our volunteers often work with young people who have special needs or are enrolled in alternative education and they relate to these young people at their level. They have high expectations of all their clients and their clients accomplish wonderful things because of it.”
Bev Page has been with SuperGrans Manawatu from the beginning. An ex-volunteer she still has a role to play as a SuperGrans Board Member and this is her story: I had a bit of spare time and I saw the ad in the paper and I looked for something where I could meet people and pass on some of my skills and I took up SuperGrans. The best thing I think for me is that I learnt a lot about myself and I’ve learnt a lot about people and how different people are and you learn not to judge because their way of life maybe isn’t the same as yours it doesn’t mean to say it’s wrong.
Well my first client was a wee young lady that had three boys and I started with her and she was on her own and she had one with learning disabilities and she just wasn’t coping with feeding the boys, housework, just being organised actually and I just went in and sat with her and showed her how to change her nappy on her baby and putting him into bed for a nap – just some form of organisation so that she could get her housework done and get meals organised for the boys and walk down to school to pick them up. She walked everywhere she walked all around town to her meetings; she was an absolutely incredible young lady. She just didn’t know some of the things to me that were common sense and I suddenly realised she didn’t know what to do so I just put her in the right direction and she is doing wonderfully well now.
- Bev Page, Board Member and former Mentoring Volunteer
Rosemary K is one of our treasured volunteers here at SuperGrans and this is her story:
I became interested with SuperGrans because I believe that there is a need in the community for older women with a bit of wisdom, a bit of knowledge and a bit of something to give back to help young families and children. It’s partly the climate we live in and the lack of skills that seem to be apparent in a lot of the families that are visited by the SuperGrans and it’s just nice to be able to do that. My own family is older and moving off it is nice to keep involved with young families and keep interested in the community.
I had one client and I was involved with helping her to get a routine in her home and more skills with interacting with the children. Yeah I suppose I hope to pass on a few cooking skills and I’m a mother of seven so there are some mothering skills there somewhere we hope. I completely recommend volunteering! I volunteer for three different things so it’s just wonderful and you meet wonderful people. It’s a great way of getting to be a part of the community and giving some back
- Rosemary K, Volunteer
One success story that comes to mind is Jenny who came to us to build on her parenting skills after being referred after the birth of her third child. “I matched her with Mary and they spent six months working together to improve Jenny’s confidence and develop new strategies to develop her parenting abilities. Jenny now has lots of strategies in place to help her parent well and we have recently closed her off as she now has the confidence to continue without Mary’s mentoring support. It is wonderful to see a client develop in their confidence while having someone walk beside them on their parenting journey just for a short while.”
- Joanne Baird, Volunteer Coordinator
Sue McAllum, founder of SuperGrans Manawatu, was interviewed and was asked if there were any incidents that stuck in her mind from the early days and this was her response:
"Probably one of my volunteers, her client that she worked with for probably two years - started with someone who had absolutely no idea on how to look after her children, how to manage her home, basically her whole life was in turmoil and that’s how she lived. Within that time she was able to get a good structure with her children, a good balance with her home life, to be able to then get out of a HousingCorp home and able to rent a home out within the community and two years later she is going well."
- Sue McCallum, SuperGrans Manawatu's First Co-ordinator
"I would absolutely recommend SuperGrans to others. I used to knit years ago, but when my grandson was born I felt quite inadequate about knitting for him. My SuperGran was so encouraging and never took over. She explained it to me and made me do the work so when it was finished I could honestly say I had made it myself and feel a great sense of achievement. She was amazing."
- Feedback from a SuperGrans one-on-one knitting client.
* Some names have been changed to ensure confidentiality.