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What has been your favourite voluntary job?

(34 Posts)
Grammaretto Wed 13-Nov-19 17:18:22

I'm asking for a friend, truly, who wants to volunteer a day or two a week somewhere where she can make a difference.
She has taken early retirement so is still quite young and fit with few commitments because she lives alone.

She has lots of skills from cooking to admin but really I think she wants to be in a fairly busy environment. She doesn't want to work in a charity shop but apart from that, she is easy.

Oldandverygrey Wed 13-Nov-19 17:26:36

My favourite voluntary job is the one I am currently doing, I help out at a Mother and Baby Group.

tanith Wed 13-Nov-19 17:29:02

I helped running a gardening group in my GD Primary school, I loved it.

Caro6699 Wed 13-Nov-19 17:33:26

My favourite job is helping out at my local library.
Great opportunities to meet and help people

Urmstongran Wed 13-Nov-19 17:40:22

My sister in law loves showing visitors around a nearby NT property. Before that she adored helping out at a zoo but the distance (an hour’s drive) took the shine off it somewhat.

Washerwoman Wed 13-Nov-19 17:42:11

The adult education centre has since closed down sadly but years ago I did a short course and volunteered as a listener and helper at classes for adults with literacy problems.It was very rewarding and I met some lovely people from all different backgrounds who for various reasons had struggled with literacy for years in silence,often too ashamed to admit they had a problem and brave enough to improve things.It came about because I was helping in the DCs school as a volunteer for the library and reading sessions and I saw a flyer asking for volunteers for adults.
This thread has got me thinking as recently retired I should look to be a volunteer again.

Sillygrandma5GK Wed 13-Nov-19 17:43:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

M0nica Wed 13-Nov-19 18:03:08

Mine was acting as a Home Advisor for what was Age Concern. I went out to visit elderly people at home. I did Benefits checked, completed Benefit and Attendance Allowance forms, acted as an advocate at Benefit Appeals and just picked up any problems they had and tried to resolve them.

In 10 years I only had one client I actively disliked. I generally went out, visited pleasant interesting people and heard some incredible stories about their lives. I met people at every level and in all but very few cases, when I finished they were better off in every way than they were before I visited.

Unfortunately funding for the scheme ended after 10 years in the post and we were all stood down and I have not yet found something as good to replace it.

BlueBelle Wed 13-Nov-19 18:16:12

Mine are right now
A volunteer in a charity shop about 15 to 20 hours a week
A library selling books online 2 hours
Weeding in a community garden as and when needed
Love it all

midgey Wed 13-Nov-19 19:02:31

My favourite time was with Riding for the Disabled, leading ponies or horses while children or adults had a ride. So much fun and very rewarding.

Grammaretto Wed 13-Nov-19 19:48:02

Oh thanks. What a wonderful selection.
Perhaps I should have asked if there are any jobs she should avoid!
I shall suggest a couple of these incase she hasn't thought of them.
I can't imagine her doing RDA. I used to do that and also loved it. Gardening isn't for her either.
The Age Concern work would be up her street or the Hospice.
You are right about distance though. That is important. No good having an hour's commute every time.

kittylester Wed 13-Nov-19 20:54:45

I help on Carer's courses with the Alzheimers Society and find it really worthwhile and absorbing!

cornergran Wed 13-Nov-19 21:33:28

As an advocate for people with learning difficulties, challenging but oh so rewarding.

NotAGran55 Wed 13-Nov-19 21:45:33

The CAB .

Callistemon Wed 13-Nov-19 22:25:32

I was going to suggest Adult Literacy classes but I see that Washerwoman has probably given more up-to-date information than I could.

Grammaretto Wed 13-Nov-19 22:28:15

My own experience of voluntary work is that it grows arms and legs. What begins as a couple of hours one morning a week becomes all day and some weekends with responsibility akin to a paid job plus emails galore and fund raising events.
Despite saying that, I have met some wonderful friends through volunteering; have done things and been to places I would never have otherwise seen. I learned a lot.

pensionpat Wed 13-Nov-19 23:18:04

Monica. You are describing my last 10 years with DWP. it was very rewarding to actively help people. In many cases their income was doubled. And everyone wanted to give me tea and cake!

BradfordLass72 Thu 14-Nov-19 01:35:03

My favourite volunteer job doesn't exist any longer, nor would it help your friend....but I'll answer your question anyway

It was working in what we used to call an, 'Abandoned Baby Home'.
The children I took care of had been abandoned because they were eiher physically or intellectually handicapped.

My job, as a working teenager with only weekends to spare, was to provide social interaction.

I sang to them, played with them, read books, took in toys (there were none at the home) and in some cases, even took them to my home for the day.

Their day to day life was simply to sit or lie in cots, so my weekends were the highlight.
Physically they were well cared for by efficient but impersonsl staff.

That was in 1962-4 and, thank goodness, a lot has changed since.

I loved those children and they broke my heart but it was a wonderful job because I saw huge changes in their lives and attitudes.

gmarie Thu 14-Nov-19 02:31:24

When my kids were young, I was a hospice volunteer and it was the most meaningful "job" I've ever had, paid or not. This was actually the consensus of my volunteer group, as well. We had monthly support meetings and I remember us sharing how people would ask things like, "How can you do it? Isn't it too sad? Don't you get depressed?" We all felt quite the opposite and everyone talked about how close they felt to these families and how meaningful the experiences were.

anniezzz09 Thu 14-Nov-19 05:37:50

A friend of mine volunteers at her local hospital and loves it. She started as a volunteer guide for visitors, has worked on the reception desk and is currently working in the pharmacy checking outgoing medicines. There are many opportunities and she's found it a friendly and worthwhile place and certainly very busy, which suits her.

LullyDully Thu 14-Nov-19 07:40:30

I did work for Homestart which involves visiting a family once a week to chat for a couple of hours. The family are in difficulties and need a friendly face. The first family needed help with an unruly boy and I was able to help them get him back on track. Also acted as a listener for his wonderful mother who became a good friend.
I had to get her out of the house.and help her cope with him in public. He was a sweet boy and was able to settle well into school.

The next family had a very disabled toddler and she needed help to take him out and to cope.generally. Interesting work.

fourormore Thu 14-Nov-19 09:34:50

Bradfordlass flowersflowers what a wonderful job you did but aren't we grateful that these places no longer exist.
Your story reminded me of a New Year's Eve many many years ago. At the time I worked as an auxiliary nurse on the nurse bank.
I had not planned on working on NYE as we'd been invited to a party, but that morning DH woke with 'Man flu' We then heard that the party hosts had also been struck down so the party was off. I was absolutely fine!
Not in a voluntary role as I was employed, but I rang the nurse bank to ask if they needed anyone anywhere (silly question on NYE!) and was sent to the maternity unit for a night shift.
I spent most of the night cuddling tiny babies while their anxious parents took a well earned break!
Call that work!

fourormore Thu 14-Nov-19 09:42:57

Sorry I deviated from the subject!
However there is a website called ....
I haven't done anything through it but it may be of interest?

jeanie99 Thu 14-Nov-19 11:28:17

It all depends on her interests as far as voluntary work.

I loved the mother and baby group I helped to manage


The monthly Lunch time for the elderly group.

There are so many things you could do.

My hubby does work for Age UK as a be friender he goes out for a chat with men who are not able to get out for medical reasons. He finds this very rewarding.

Alexa Thu 14-Nov-19 11:32:18

Taking my dogs to young adult disability day care.