Saturday, 20 October 2012

The Lone Nut

At the Team v residential last weekend, which marked the start of our ‘leadership journey’, we were shown a Youtube video.

Take a few minutes to witness the ‘lone nut’, an ordinary guy who stands up in a crowd and makes himself noticed.  

The moral of the story?  ‘The first follower transforms the lone nut into a leader'.  If the first person hadn’t joined in with the crazy dancing, this guy would have remained a strange man doing a weird dance in a public place.   

Just as the lone nut required followers, Team v needs volunteers. 

Team v leaders all over England are looking for 16-25 year olds with a passion for social change to get involved and make our voices heard on important issues.  The first campaign has just kicked off and it’s all about raising awareness of youth homelessness, which affects over 75,000 young people in the UK each year. 

It doesn't matter how much time you can give or what skills/experience you have, we will support you.  Together, we can make a difference.

So come on, please, don’t let me be a lone nut! Sign up here 

Friday, 19 October 2012

Team v needs you!

Following the announcement of Team v’s first campaign, tackling youth homelessness , we have started recruiting volunteers to help us complete our mission! As a youth-led project, we want other young people to join us in running campaigns in our local communities, all over England. 

                                                    *   Are you 16 – 25?
                                                    *   Got some spare time?
                                                    *   Want to change the world?
                                                    *   Learn some new skills?
                                                    *   Be part of something special?  

Each team needs 3 to 5 core volunteers who will commit three hours a week in a specific area.  These roles include Event Co-ordinator, Marketing and PR Manager, Community Engagement Officer, and Director of Photography and Video.  If you have an interest in any of these areas, get in touch today! You don’t need any experience or qualifications, just a passion to get involved and make a difference in your community.  We also need general volunteers who can give any time they possibly can, even an hour! 

If you’re aged 16-25 and live in Derby, you can apply here: 

If you’re aged 16-25 and don’t live in Derby, don’t panic! You can find your nearest Team v here:

 What are you waiting for? 
Join the Team v revolution and do something about youth homelessness. 

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Team v year 2 takes off!

***You can read the full version of this blog post on - why not sign up to while you’re there!*** 

Last Friday 105 eager young volunteers gathered for the launch of Team v’s first campaign.  In a jam-packed three day event, we received training on all the important stuff, from budgeting to being a Purple Cow (standing out from the crowd, not being an actual...yeah, you get it).  Sessions were led by vInspired staff, Dare2Lead, Shelter, NYRG/St. Basils, and we were supported by representatives from the partner organisations for Team v: The Rank Foundation, NIACE, and CAF.   

It was revealed that the first issue Team v are tackling is Youth Homelessness.  75,000 young people are affected by homelessness in the UK every year, and it could happen to anyone – we want other young people to be aware of this.  

Watch the campaign video to find out more: 

One of the best things about the weekend for me was the opportunity to talk to my fellow leaders.  I knew it already, but there are some seriously inspiring young people out there.  Everyone has other commitments – some barely have time to sleep already, the amount of things they do – but that won’t stop them giving as much as they possibly can to Team v.   

We can’t do this alone, we need 16 – 25 year olds to volunteer with us to plan and deliver the campaign, and help to raise awareness of youth homelessness across England.  Together, we can change it. 

Sound good? To find your nearest Team v leader go to
If you live in Derby you can sign up to help with my campaign here - I'd love to hear from you!

Friday, 12 October 2012

The moment we've all been waiting for...

The time has come: shout it from the rooftops and tell everyone you know – Team v’s first campaign is Youth Homelessness                                                          

Over 75,000 young people in the UK are affected so this is a really important issue for us to raise awareness about.

Look out for updates soon on the next steps and recruitment of core volunteers. 

If you have any stories or experiences relating to homelessness then please get in touch, we want to make this campaign as powerful as possible and need your help to do so! 

Email:          Twitter: @TeamvDerbyCity  

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Campaign Countdown Creeps Closer!

In exactly one day (precisely 24 hours) the big reveal will take place and we will finally discover the theme of Team v’s first campaign! 

Stay tuned to Twitter @TeamvDerbyCity to be first to find out what important issue we will be tackling in campaign number one.  If you'd like to get involved or find out more, get in touch! 

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Back to the Bubble

This weekend I’m off to Warwick University for the first Team v residential.  Enthusiasm has been building since the warm-up day which gave us an opportunity to meet the 100-strong crew of Team v leaders, but I have particular reason to be excited about where it is being held.  I graduated from Warwick Uni just over two years ago, having spent four years of my life as an undergraduate there.  I loved my time there and haven’t been back to the university campus (or the ‘bubble’, as it is affectionately named due to the detachment from reality you feel when you’re there for more than a few days) since graduation so it will be brilliant – if a little surreal – to return as a... ahem, mature, non-student.   

In my third year of uni I was lucky enough to be on the youth advisory board for vinspired, then called v20.  Being on v20 undoubtedly changed my life.  I met some incredible young people who were unbelievably inspiring and I came to realise that my passions lay in helping others.  Having volunteered since the age of eleven on various projects both in and out of school, I suppose I always knew this, but suddenly it dawned on me that you can make a career out of it without being a teacher or a doctor.  The voluntary sector doors had finally swung open and I could see the range of opportunities out there as an employee, not just a volunteer.  Now I’ll admit I haven’t managed to get a foot on the ladder yet, but by throwing my efforts into volunteering for numerous different organisations and gaining experience in various areas, I’m acquiring the skills, experience and contacts to stand me in good stead (hopefully) for a brighter future. 

I had to work hard for my degree.  I’m not the type of person who can skip lectures, roll into an exam after a late night, leave the exam an hour early and go home with top marks (not that I’m bitter) but during my time as a student I managed to dedicate time I wasn’t in lectures/writing essays/stressing out to a few projects, inspired by my involvement with v20.  This ranged from assisting the Volunteer Co-ordinator at a Community Venture on a weekly basis to teaching English and Maths for one month in Rajasthan, India.  In 2009 I received a Warwick Advantage Award for my work with v20, recognition of the time I had committed to volunteering whilst at university.  So for a little of my time I got a lot in return. 

I hope my experience shows that whether you’re in college, uni, or a full-time job, if you spare a little time to help others, you’ll soon realise you’re also helping yourself.  Volunteering with Team v is a fantastic opportunity to develop your skills, meet new people, and you might even discover a career path you had never considered before.  Not bad for a few hours of your time, hey? 

Email if you’d like to find out more about Team v Derby City.       

Monday, 8 October 2012

Campaign Countdown Continues!

In just over 90 hours the first Team v campaign will be revealed to young leaders from all over England ready and raring to take a stand and make a change in their communities. 

Last year the three campaigns led by Team v focused on:  
·               *  Food poverty
·               *  Isolation and loneliness in older people
·               *  Improving children’s literacy

We have absolutely no idea what the campaigns will be this year, but can’t wait to find out!
Keep an eye on @TeamvDerbyCity twitter on Friday afternoon to be the first to hear what campaign number one will tackle. 

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Are you sitting comfortably?

Blimey, this has been quite a week for national celebrations.  We’ve had Older People’s Day, British Egg Week, National Poetry Day, and it’s also Children’s Book Week.  

The final campaign that Team v ran last year  was ‘improving literacy in children through the power of stories’ – surely what Children’s Book Week is all about too.  The 2011-2012 leaders achieved great things, with many organising storytelling events for primary school children, inspiring them to both read and write stories.   

Take a few minutes to watch the results video and be inspired: 

In less than one week we'll know the theme of our first campaign and the wheels on the Team v Derby City bus will be in motion! 

If you're interested in getting involved or want to know more, please get in touch:   @TeamvDerbyCity

Thursday, 4 October 2012

How many words rhyme with volunteer?

Another celebration today - it's National Poetry Day! After a quick rummage in the depths of my primary school memory I put together a little acrostic (fancy, I know!) poem for Team v...

Teams of young people, like branches on a tree 

England get ready! This is your opportunity 

Anyone, anywhere, soon you will see 

Make a difference in your community 

Volunteer with us... and join Team v! 

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

How do you like your eggs?

(Disclaimer: This post contains bad puns.  You have been warned.) 

So, it’s British Egg Week.  It seems only right that I honour it with an eggcellent blog post. 

As part of the interview for Team v we had to take along an object that represented our passions and talk about why.  I chose an egg box.  No, I’m not yolking.  

I had numerous reasons for this selection:  

> As a farmer’s granddaughter, it represents family values and happy childhood memories on the farm.
Eggs are always a key ingredient in baking, a scrummy skill and hobby passed down through the generations of my family.    
It symbolises my belief in people power when it comes to making social change – like if everyone buys free-range eggs, there will be a lot of happy hens.  
The egg box itself represents my love of creativity and crafts.  Something so simple and everyday, with a dollop of glitter and a handful of pipe cleaners, could become a caterpillar or a spaceship within minutes.  I love the idea of turning the ordinary into (yep, you guessed it) the eggstraordinary. 

Team v leaders are like eggs – on our own we could be good, but mixed together with a bunch of eggstra ingredients we will combine to make something really spectacular.  

And that’s why I’m thrilled to be a part of Team v.        

You could say....I'm eggstatic :-) 

Monday, 1 October 2012

Older People's Day

Today is Older People's Day in the UK, tying in with the UN International Day of Older Persons. 

The aim of the day is to 'tackle negative attitudes and outdated stereotypes' by celebrating the contributions that older people make to society and the economy, and the amazing things they achieve.  

The second issue tackled by last year’s Team v leaders was around loneliness and isolation in older people.  Learning that 1 in 10 older people in the UK were affected, Team v leaders across England organised events for older people in their communities, creating new friendships both with their peers and the younger generation.  I found this to be an incredibly emotional and inspiring campaign to watch come to life via the Team v Twitter and Youtube accounts, so being involved must have been wonderful.  

I only hope that as a Team v leader for 2012-13 I can achieve even a small slice of the fantastic results that you can see here - take a few minutes to watch this and be inspired: 

It's the first day of October - why not make this the first day of a new exciting journey with Team v? 

If you're aged 16 - 25 and live in Derby, get in touch.  Together we can do amazing things. 

Lucy  -  Team v Leader for Derby City    @TeamvDerbyCity