Talking newspapers for blind and visually impaired people in Oxford & district
Oxtalk talking newspaper USB stick

To be an Oxtalk Volunteer

Oxtalk is a small but very important charity for people who have a visual impairment. By producing a weekly talking newspaper Oxtalk helps to keep people who have a visual impairment in touch with the local news and informs them of some of the social events happening in Oxford. There are various volunteering roles within Oxtalk and hopefully there is one that appeals to you!

A News Editor selects articles from the local papers

A News Editor selects articles from the local papers

News Editors – Working from home News Editors select the news items from the local Oxford papers and the Community Newspapers that are available in the localities and districts of Oxford. There are usually 2 News Editors each week, 1 selecting the news items for 3 days and 1 for 4 days, this News Editor compiles the final selection of news items and notices for the next week’s recording. News Editors select the news items approximately once every 6 weeks.

Oxtalk volunteers reading the news

Oxtalk volunteers reading the weekly local news at OAB

Readers – On occasions the 2nd News Editor is a Reader for the following week, so takes the selected news items to the recording session. Reading teams vary each week. The commitment is approximately once every 6 – 8 weeks.

Technical Officers [TO] – TOs manage the recording desk, producing good quality recordings and supervising the reading teams. They produce the USB master and up-load the recording onto the website. There are currently 6 TOs, volunteering once every 6 weeks. 1 TO maintains the equipment.

Copiers – There are usually 2 or 3 volunteers each week who empty the listeners returned wallets and prepare the wallets for posting out with the new Oxtalk recording. The Copiers also write out the new listeners’ address cards and laminate them. The master USB produced by the TO is copied as many times as is required, this information comes from the listener postal list. Copiers volunteer approximately every 6 weeks.

Key Holders – Attend throughout the evening and take the sacks of wallets to a post office.

Web Master – 1 volunteer maintains the Oxtalk website.

Fund raising – Whenever Oxtalk is allocated a fund raising day by one of the local supermarkets an appeal is sent out for volunteers to help and there have always been many offers of help.

Publicity – Volunteers offer to help at various publicity events, e.g. spend time at the Oxtalk stall at the UK Older Peoples Day promoting Oxtalk and informing members of the public. A volunteer gives talks about the service history of Oxtalk and how Oxtalk is produced each week.

Trustees – There is a Committee of Trustees who meet 4 times a year plus at the Annual General Meeting. The Trustees are responsible for the management and organisation of Oxtalk, a charity accountable to the Charity Commission.

The majority of volunteers are committed to 1 role but there are some volunteers who have more than 1 role. Regular commitment by a volunteer is very important in order for the listeners to receive their Oxtalk recording of the local news every week.

To find out more visit The Weekly Oxtalk Production! And then you can arrange to visit one Tuesday evening when you will have the opportunity to meet some of the Oxtalk volunteers and see how the Oxtalk recording is produced. Please contact mail@oxtalk.org.uk.

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