Vacancy: Children in Care Letterbox Club Coordinator (East Riding)

Children in Care (CIC) Letterbox Club Coordinator (East Riding)

Contract 2 years (possibility for renewal depending on funding streams)
Full time
Salary £21,000 PA
Employment start date: 3rd April 2018

Job Summary

Are you a fully qualified primary school teacher looking for a change in career but still have a passion for working with children? Do you love to read and love reading with children? Do you love working with young people and want them to have the best possible outcomes academically and personally? If you answered yes to these questions then we might be right for you and you might be right for us.

Hull and East Yorkshire (HEY) Children’s University is a progressive independent charity based at the University of Hull. Due to an award of grant funding, we are recruiting a Letter Box Coordinator to run our Letter Box Club in the East Riding of Yorkshire with 25 children in care for two years and possibly longer depending on funding streams. The Letterbox Coordinator will work in partnership with the East Riding Council Children in Care (CIC) team and schools across the East Riding to deliver this award-winning intervention scheme, which was developed by the Book Trust.

The Letterbox Coordinator will provide children with one to one reading sessions (during school hours) utilising the materials provided in the Book Trust parcels which are delivered every month. You will also organise and deliver learning experiences for the children in your programme during the term breaks and summer holidays. Our programme is holistic and focuses of children’s social and emotional development as well as academic achievement, particularly focusing on their ability to read. You will need to assess the children’s reading age and provide periodic progress reports.

You must be a fun, smiley and approachable person whom children respond well to. You must be patient, organised and creative in your approach to teaching. Flexibility is a must as occasionally some weekend and evening work will be required.

Essential Criteria (summary)

  •  Fully qualified teacher (QTS)
  •  A passion for reading
  •  Full UK driving licence and access to own vehicle
  •  Fully flexible (must be able to work some weekends and evenings)
  •  Experience in assessing
  •  Experience working in partnership across several different services reading
  •  Experience working with vulnerable young people

Desirable Criteria (summary)

  •  Experience working with Children in Care

**Please see below for detailed job description and person specification**

Special Requirements

Due to this job involving working with children and young people, the successful candidate will be required to complete an enhanced disclosure DBS check. Along with, providing two references, one being from the manager at their current or most recent place of employment.

Application Closes: February 2nd 2018

Interviews Held: February 10th, February 14th (3 Part Interview process)

To apply for this role, please email your CV and a covering letter to or post to Natasha Barley, 65 Salmon Grove, Hull, HU6 7SZ.



1. Strategic Direction

· Deliver the HEYCU CIC service ensuring that children in care have equal access to activities, trips and visits designed to support their personal, social, and emotional development

· Build positive and effective relationships with vulnerable children in the looked after system based on a foundation of trust and respect

· Raise the profile of the HEYCU CIC service ensuring that the aims and objectives of the service are widely known and understood

· Working through the POD Coordinators develop an effective strategy to identify, target and engage children in the care system

· Build positive and effective relationships with schools across the city engaging children in learning activities that support their education

· Work with children individually or in groups ensuring that activities cater for their individual and collective needs and that all children have equal access

·Share information as appropriate with social workers, schools and other support workers to ensure a seamless support is in place.

· Assess children’s reading ages

· Deliver Letterbox parcels to 25 children in care and provide one to one reading sessions utilising the parcels

·Oversee assessment and evaluation of the programme and write reports

· Able to work some evenings and weekends when required

2. Partnerships

· Act as a positive ambassador for HEY CU at all times using every opportunity to positively promote the service

· Develop and maintain committed, positive and effective relationships with Hull City Council, social worker teams, schools, residential care homes and mentors to strengthen the sustainability of HEYCU CIC programme long term

3. Quality

· Ensure the CIC service is of the highest quality monitoring children and adults feedback forms and continually improving the service in response.

· Follow internal procedures for planning and booking activities and events ensuring risk assessment and evaluations are fully completed and that all data is captured accurately

· Operate within national and local frameworks including Data Protection, Equal Opportunities, etc and apply HEYCU policies and procedures across the service

·Follow Safeguarding policies and procedures rigorously and ensure that all mentors follow the same policies and procedures

4. Staff

· Work as part of a team supporting colleagues to ensure a professional and effective service

· Support volunteers and tutors to help them deliver effective quality programmes that reflect the ethos of HEYCU and positively promote the service

5. Budget

· Operate within an agreed annual budget ensuring the HEYCU CIC service is cost effective and achieves all outputs and outcomes within budget

· Work within internal finance systems to effectively monitor spend and to meet audit requirements

Qualifications and Skills


Codes: AF = Application Form, I = Interview, R = References

1. Qualifications:


Teaching degree primary school (QTS)


Evidence of continuing professional development and/or membership of a professional body.


Drivers licence and car insurance to use vehicle for work


2. Relevant Experience:


Experience working in partnership across several different services


Experience of developing and delivering innovative education or youth development programme outside of a classroom setting


Experience of working with vulnerable and disadvantaged children and building trusting but professional relationships


3. Skills


The ability to develop and promote HEY CU CIC service across the city and secure support from city wide stakeholders


Ability and confidence to manage, motivate, supervise and develop mentors to support looked after children


The ability to develop positive and productive partnerships Hull City Council, social care teams, schools, business and other stakeholder services across the city.


Experience managing a budget


4. Knowledge


Knowledge of professional practice when working with children


Up to date knowledge of safeguarding policies and procedures


General knowledge of generic policies around health and safety, data protection etc and how to apply and test these in the work place



Understanding of systems to manage and report performance


5. Interpersonal/Communication Skills:


Verbal Skills

Ability to establish professional and effective working relationships with a range of partners, companies and sponsors and a Board of Trustees


Good communication and interpersonal skills. Clearly spoken with good telephone and face-to-face communications

I, R

Good presentation skills

I, R

Can demonstrate influencing, caring, advocacy and negotiating skills

I, R

Written Skills

Able to produce clear and concise reports for a variety of audiences

I, R

Competent in the use of IT systems including Microsoft and internet

I, R

Get your 2018 calendar – Designed by the children of Hull!

Proud Hullensians can snap up some original artwork which celebrates their home city.

Leeds Building Society challenged local school children to create a design which showed what they love about Hull and the winning drawings, paintings and collages have been turned into a charity calendar.

The 2018 calendar is raising funds for Hull and East Yorkshire Children’s University.

The winners, who range in age from four to 11, collected their prizes at a VIP viewing at Hull Paragon railway station, managed by train company TransPennine Express, where their designs are gracing the concourse over the coming weeks.

“The calendar has landmarks including the Humber Bridge and the Maritime Museum, and it was difficult to pick the winners from so many lovely pictures,” said Denise Woodall, the manager of Leeds Building Society’s Hull branch.

“We’re thrilled TransPennine Express offered to display the artwork at Hull Paragon station so it can be seen and enjoyed by thousands of people every day.

”We hope they’ll pop round to our branch in Paragon Street and buy a calendar to take home and brighten up their kitchen, hall or office.”

David Hatfield, Station Manager at Hull for TransPennine Express, commented: “We are thrilled that the station is playing host to these wonderful works of art created by our young people.

“I would encourage people to come along to the station and see the colourful designs for themselves.”

Rose James, Partnership Manager of Hull and East Yorkshire Children’s University, explained where the funds raised from the calendar would be used.

She said: “Leeds Building Society in Hull is raising money for our charity so that a group of children can visit London for a day that they will never forget. We are extremely grateful to them for fundraising for us and we think the calendars look fantastic!”

The calendar costs £5.99 and is on sale now from Leeds Building Society, 78 Paragon Street, Hull HU1 3PW. All proceeds go to charity.

2017- A Fantastic Year for HEY CU

2017 has been such a great year for our charity and has been our busiest yet!

We have won awards, including a Weston Charity Award which granted us acceptance on the Pilotlight Programme. This programme paired us with highly respected business experts who offer advice and support with the strategic direction of the charity.

We have had two of our volunteers, Mark Stockdale and Ruth Truelove, receive British Empire Medals for their services to education and our founder Dr. John Buttrick received an MBE at Buckingham Palace. Another of our volunteers won Volunteer of the Year at the Hull Daily Mail Golden Apple Awards.

In November, our Director Natasha and Partnership Manager Rose had the honour and privilege of having lunch with Her Majesty the Queen during her visit to Hull.

We were lucky enough to have three projects funded by Hull 2017.  Our Song for Hull project with the NHS choir and our Children in Care Visual Celebration event were both funded by the Creative Communities grants. Our Digitull project was funded by the No Limits programme and meant that every child in the city had the chance to engage in the City of Culture celebrations.

We also ran two additional City of Culture projects with the support of local businesses. Arco supported our BBC Reporters project which saw children become official BBC correspondents for the Hull 2017 events. ABP funded the “I Love Hull” Container Project which gave local children the opportunity to have their artwork printed on a container that will embark on a trackable journey around the globe.

We also released our very first Christmas single which has reached over 60,000 people!

Even though we have been so very busy, we have still managed to reach 6,000 local children this year and we hope to reach even more children in 2018.

We would like to thank our trustees, tutors, volunteers, partners, donors and friends for all of your support this year.

We wish you all a fantastic 2018!

BP inspires local children with HEY CU

HEY Children’s University and BP have formed an exciting new partnership which saw sixty-five children from across Hull and East Riding of Yorkshire come together at the University of Hull to take part in a Science Technology, Engineering, and Maths (STEM) event.

Working alongside BP professionals, the HEY CU team and volunteer mentors, the children learnt about the array of career opportunities available at BP, hearing first hand from staff as they gave an overview of their day jobs including reliability, chemical and mechanical engineers to recruitment specialists. The children then took part in three activities including:

Forces, Motion and Bloodhound SSC, learning about the land speed record and its history, the children went onto conduct their own experiments.

Team building, focussing on the art of communication, job roles and responsibilities to complete a build out of Lego.

Ex’straw’dinary Engineering, children created an oil platform out of straws and marshmallows to create a structure. The two strongest structures from each school went forward to a live experiment during the afternoon lead by Professor Mark Lorch. There was an air of excitement as schools went head to head to see whose structure was the strongest.  Pupils from Oldfleet Primary School were announced the winners and received a Go Pro Camera.

Mark Lorch, Professor of Science, Communication and Public Engagement at the University of Hull said, “Working in association with HEY Children’s University and BP, put science and engineering into real life context as the children met scientists and engineers as relatable role models who demonstrated these subject areas are accessible for all, using everyday items including Lego, straws, marshmallows and paper. Science and engineering is not just about learning facts and figures, it’s also about problem solving, teamwork and communication.  We are all driven to make the subjects fun and exciting for young people, to inspire them for their future and the opportunities available.”

Lisa Whitton, East Riding Manager of HEY CU said, “Working in partnership with BP Saltend and the University of Hull, gave the children the opportunity to experience a new learning environment that they can aspire to be part of in the future. The event highlighted leadership skills and children discovered new talents by taking part in the activities. They also enjoyed meeting real life engineers and working with them throughout the day. We are looking forward to building upon this experience to involve more young people in 2018.”


A visit from Santa!

Last week, it really was the most wonderful time of the year at HEY CU as we arranged for Santa Claus to come to town for our Breakfast with Santa visits!

Santa and his HEY CU elves took a sleigh ride and visited 5 schools to give deserving children a Christmas that they would never forget. The children had no idea what was about to happen when our team of smiley elves knocked on their classroom door.  “Here comes Santa Claus” the children cried, as Santa himself walked into the classroom shaking a set of silver bells.

Santa asked the children if they would like to sit and have a special Christmas breakfast with Santa (provided by Tesco Hull St Stephen’s) and the children were very happy to accept!

After the children devoured their Christmas treats, they had a fantastic time rockin’ around the Christmas tree with Santa and his elves as Christmas music rang around the room.

Then, all was calm as the children sat to hear Santa tell them a festive tale, “The Best Christmas Present Ever!”

Just when the children thought their wonderful Christmas time couldn’t get any better, Santa asked them if they would like some presents! The children squealed with delight as the elves carried through sacks full of presents with the children’s names written on them. It really did feel like Christmas time!

Each child was given a gift and asked to sit quietly until Santa shouted the words “open them!” The children couldn’t believe their eyes as they unwrapped exactly what they asked for from Santa!

Then it was time for Santa and his elves to say farewell and drive home for Christmas to finish packing all of the presents for the children of the world.

Thank you to J Marr Seafoods, Pamela Gale, Hinks Insurance, Sonoco Trident, MKM,  Hays Recruitment, Beal Homes, Northern Gas Networks and Denise Morgan for sponsoring the presents for the children. You really did make it a fairytale for them.

Merry Christmas everyone! From everyone at HEY CU.

To find out more about Breakfast with Santa please watch this video:



Our Paintbox masterpieces are in St Stephen’s!

A unique exhibition of inspirational artwork was unveiled at St Stephen’s on Thursday 30th November. The exhibition has been arranged through the Hull & East Yorkshire Children’s University and made possible by the generosity of Aberdeen Enterprise Finance LTD of Pocklington. The junior masterpieces have been created by 100 City of Hull primary school children.

Each of the children walked and sketched the beautiful countryside of the Yorkshire Wolds and worked with local artist Rose Horspool to create some stunning artworks.

The children were based for the day in the Wolds Heritage Centre at Warter, near Pocklington and with their own sketch books in hand, worked as true artists. Having also looked at the work of David Hockney and the paintings he created on the Yorkshire Wolds their paintings also reflected his love of bold colour and vibrant style.

The work on display is a selection of all that has been done as part of the Children’s University “Paintbox” module. This is a local charity that provides children from disadvantaged backgrounds with experiences outside the classroom that raise their aspirations. Last year the charity worked with almost 6000 children. In the last academic year 2016-17 fourteen schools have taken part in the experience amounting to 384 children from disadvantaged backgrounds being inspired to think about creative careers.

Jim Harris, centre manager of St Stephen’s said “We have supported the Children’s University for a number of years and we are delighted to be able to provide a platform for the children to display their work. I would urge all visitors to look up and be inspired by the superb artwork produced by these talented 7 to 10 year olds”.

The exhibition of work will be hanging in the main shopping area either side of the main stairwell until the end of January 2018.

Our Christmas single! “The 12 Months of Culture”

Watch the video here!

Today we launched our very first Charity Christmas single, with an accompanying music video, to be sent out as our e-Christmas card and raise money! The song is a new version of the 12 Days of Christmas where lyrics have been rewritten to celebrate all things Hull and our fantastic city of culture year.

Rose James, Partnership Manager at HEY Children’s University explained how the idea came about:

“The HEY CU team were talking about putting together some sort of Christmas song to raise funds and we thought that The 12 Days of Christmas would be really fun to re-write with a Hull theme. So I started putting together some lyrics and the “12 Months of Culture” was born. It was my colleague Chris who then came up with the brilliant idea of sending it out as an e-Christmas card too”

The usual “turtle doves”, “French hens” and “calling birds” have been given the Hull treatment and are now “Larkin toads” “Dead Bods” and “Volunteers”. The focal line of “A Partridge in a Pear Tree” celebrates Hull icon Jean “Busy Bee” Bishop -“A lady dressed as a bee”.

With a team of only 6 full time staff at HEY Children’s University, it was clear that we would need some help to make the project a reality, so Rose contacted Wayne Willis at yesyesBD, a Hull-based creative consultancy, and he kindly agreed to help arrange the recording of the song and the filming of the video.

“The other difficulty we faced was the funding of the project” Rose told us, “so Wayne put me in touch with Smailes Goldie to see if they could help”

Smailes Goldie loved the idea of the project and agreed to be the sole sponsor. The accountancy firm are also using the video, in which some of their staff appear, as their e-Christmas card.

Peter Dearing, Partner at Smailes Goldie said “Throughout 2017 our staff has volunteered and supported various cultural events in the city as part of the City of Culture year.  When HEY Children’s University contacted us about the “12 months of Culture” we loved the idea and were happy to help. The Children’s University has provided life changing experiences to the young people in Hull.”

The song was recorded at the Portobello Methodist Church with local choir Do Re Mi providing the vocals. The Choir will perform the song at their Christmas concert this weekend and will be fundraising for HEY Children’s University at the event.

The accompanying music video was shot over 2 days in key locations around Hull. Over 40 volunteers took part in the project including Olympic gold medallist Luke Campbell, BBC Look North’s Peter Levy and “Face of Hull” Kofi Smiles.

“We are incredibly grateful to Smailes Goldie for sponsoring the project and we hope that everyone enjoys the video as much as we do!” Rose said.

The song is available to download from all major digital stores. All profits will be donated towards helping children living in disadvantaged areas of Hull and the East Riding.

Lunch with Her Majesty The Queen!

On Thursday 16th November, HEY Children’s University Director Natasha Barley and Partnership Manager Rose James had the honour of attending a private luncheon with Her Majesty The Queen as part of her visit to Hull.

The luncheon was held at The University of Hull with a small selection of guests and Natasha and Rose were lucky enough to be invited to attend. The guests and Her Majesty enjoyed a pork terrine starter, lamb loin main and miniature apple pie dessert, all prepared by the University’s fantastic catering team.

HEY CU Director Natasha said “Being invited by Her Majesty the Queen to attend a private lunch at the University is one of the highlights of my career. It is also fantastic validation that the work we are doing is important and valued by the monarchy. I don’t think you can get a better accolade.”

Partnership Manager Rose had written a letter to Her Majesty over a year ago to tell her all about our Ambassadors of Hull Experience, in which she is hailed as the ultimate ambassador. Her Majesty sent a detailed reply stating that she had read the letter with great interest and would love to hear more should she visit Hull in it’s year as City of Culture.

“We were very excited to receive such a detailed reply from Her Majesty The Queen” Rose said “But we never could have imagined that we would be invited to attend a lunch with her! It was completely surreal and utterly wonderful to be sat eating lunch so close to The Queen. We are incredibly proud of the work we do and to get this recognition is incredible for the charity”

Lunch with Her Majesty come just weeks after HEY Children’s University Founder Dr John Buttrick received his MBE at Buckingham Palace and this week two of our volunteers Mark Stockdale and Ruth Truelove will be presented with their British Empire Medals (BEM) at Burton Agnes Hall.

Container Project

A shipping container decorated with art designed by local children is due to set off on its worldwide journey today after being officially launched by ABP, Samskip and Hull & East Yorkshire Children’s University.

The project commenced earlier this year as part of ABP Humber’s partnership and ongoing support of the charity, Hull & East Yorkshire Children’s University and the City of Culture 2017.

Pupils from thirty-five local schools took part in a competition where classes were asked to explain why they love Hull by writing a poem or a story. These entries were judged and the ten winning classes then had the opportunity to come on a HEY CU experience sponsored by ABP and draw or digitally master a piece of artwork which they were able to submit to ABP for judging.

The ten winning images were then printed on to sheeting which wrapped the container, kindly donated by global logistics company, Samskip.

The container competition sparked the interest of local children who will be able to track the decorated container around the world. By watching where in the world the container travels, the project aims to increase the children’s understanding of trade and will in turn, show them how the Port of Hull is pivotal in the journey of goods travelling to and from the UK.

Simon Bird, Regional Director for ABP Humber said: “The opportunity to ease children into learning about our local economy, the transportation of goods and the importance of their region when it comes to trade is one not to be missed. We have an obligation to help our younger generations learn about the possible effects of Brexit but to also show them how the Humber region is succeeding in these times of unrest.”

Natasha Banke, Director of Hull & East Yorkshire Children’s University said: “We have an amazing partnership with ABP that allows us to teach children about the ports and the pivotal role they play not only in the local economy but the country as a whole. There are so many job opportunities at the ports and working in partnership with ABP allows us to inspire children to think about pursuing careers in shipping, supply chain and logistics to name a few. ABP’s commitment to inspiring local children is outstanding.“


Beerhouse Self Drive Hire take on the Lyke Wake Walk for HEY CU

On Saturday 27th May 2017 Beerhouse Self Drive Hire & Minstergate took on the Lyke Wake Walk to raise money for HEY Children’s University and St Catherine’s Hospice. 22 hrs later they completed it!

It was a great experience and everybody showed great team spirit in helping and encouraging each other to continue when spirits were low!

Over the course of the walk, the team split into three groups, with the first group coming in on 18 hrs (Katie & Grant) the second group on 19hrs (Nat, Chloe, Ryan & Lisa) and the Third group on 22 hrs, completing the

last 2 miles in their flip flops! (Sarah, Lucy, Beckie, Ness, John & Phil)

There were three casualties along the way and, as determined as they were to continue, they made the very tough decision to stop the walk.

Everyone agreed that this was the hardest challenge they had done, by far.  But as tough and brutal as it was, the sense of achievement when completing it was worth all the pain!

Phil Moses, Director at Beerhouse Self Drive, said “This was a great experience and we all feel a great sense of achievement. To say that not all of the team knew each other before the walk, it was great to see so many each other when they were feeling low. Well done all!”

The team raised an amazing £3000 to be split between both charities. The £1500 raised for HEY Children’s University will fund the train tickets for a class of children to take a trip to London with us.

Thank you so much to Beerhouse Self Drive!


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