I started volunteering with HS 3 years ago. It's not the easiest thing to do but it does make a difference. My advice would be, be yourself and try to listen more than talk (depending on the family obviously). You'll soon see where you can help most, whether it be giving parent(s) a break, getting out and about, practical help etc. Above all reassurance that they are doing a great job! Good luck!
I was a Homestart volunteer for about 4 years. Loved it. Quite nerve wracking at the start, but once you get to know your family (and vice versa), it'll be the start of a great relationship! Its brilliant being able to help them find their way through their problems - whatever they are - and see them find a better way of life as a result.
I'm still in touch with 2 out of the 5 families I helped - one's become a friend, too!
lovely to hear about another Homestart volunteer! - it is a fantastic charity and I have been involved for about 4 yrs - Best advice I can give you is just to take a breath and relax - your new family are probably just as anxious about meeting you and the more relaxed you can be , the easier it will be to put your new family at ease. Remember that, for them, it can be quite scary inviting a strange person into your home, so try to mindful of that. You will soon find your feet and it will be the most rewarding thing you can ever imagine doing !