Be My Buddy!

For more than a year now, The Y has been encouraging staff to get involved in our Buddy Scheme. Born out of a desire to encourage communication between individuals and departments and provide opportunities for growth, learning and development, the Buddy Scheme has been a welcome addition to life at The Y. With many staff taking the opportunity to engage and ‘Buddy Up’ with someone from across the organisation, colleagues are not only more able to understand a peer’s area of work, but also learn about a colleague’s interests outside the workplace. The Buddy Scheme is intended to connect two colleagues for a period of six weeks and once those six weeks are up, you’re allocated a new buddy to learn all about!

My first buddy was from the transitions team. We spent some time chatting about our roles and how they might support each other moving forward, my colleague in housing and myself in fundraising. I mentioned to my colleague, that we had been fortunate enough to receive a very generous donation of designer branded clothing. When I spoke to my colleague about how we could get the haul of designer goodies to our residents, she helped me organise a drop in for them. Residents were able to pop in and choose a number of items ranging from hoodies and hats to trainers, t-shirts and trousers. It was a great success, with all items being enthusiastically selected by our young people. Without my colleague’s support and experience, many of those items might not have been distributed yet, but now they are being worn and appreciated by our residents!

I’ve now been ‘Buddied’ with my colleague from the theatre team. Having a love of the theatre and writing, both passions my colleague shares, our first meeting was spent talking about our roles and all things theatre and writing. Needless to say, I’m really looking forward to our next meet!
I think my takeaway from the Buddy sessions so far, is that if we can learn more about our colleagues; what they do in work and what interests them out of work, it not only encourages communication and creates a greater understanding of each other, but also gives you the chance to develop a relationship with someone in the organisation you might not have had the opportunity to otherwise do!

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