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It’s National Volunteers Week so I’d like to pay tribute...

(4 Posts)
grannyactivist Thu 03-Jun-21 00:43:51 my brilliant co-workers and all the other people who give their time talents and energy as volunteers for a huge range of good causes.

Six years ago, along with another local woman, I started a small charity helping homeless and vulnerably housed people. The other woman left to take up a paid job, but for almost five years I have been blessed with a wonderful co-worker who is not in his comfort zone, but does a cracking job nonetheless. We have recently expanded our team to include another volunteer who has been rather thrown in at the deep end, but is getting on with the job. This week they jointly worked to help a suicidal young man get his life back on track and I’m so proud of them.

This year we’ve worked with five people who between them have made seven suicide attempts. It takes a huge emotional toll, but my volunteers have demonstrated enormous patience, compassion and professionalism.

Anyone else want to share your ‘volunteer’ stories?

Cabbie21 Thu 03-Jun-21 08:52:39

I volunteer for Citizens Advice. I work from home these days, and help people to complete the lengthy claim forms for various disability benefits. I also help them to challenge poor decisions.
It is not always easy over the phone, but for some people, it is the only conversation they have had all week.
I am not very good at anything practical, but here I can use my language skills, my ability to absorb and convey information, technology skills( often extra support is needed); empathy and patience are often stretched. I have been doing this voluntary work for about 12 years now. Regulations change, there are always new things to take on board, so it keeps my brain ticking over, as well as helping people.
It is very satisfying.
There are other roles too, but I seem to have found my niche.

grannyactivist Thu 03-Jun-21 09:54:39

I salute you Cabbie21, I found filling out disability (PIP) forms and gathering the requisite evidence for them to be very stressful as so much is riding on a successful outcome. I now have a very well qualified volunteer to take on the form filling and I’m very grateful to her. ?

downtoearth Thu 03-Jun-21 20:37:09

Today I have helped an elderly lady complete an AA form
It took 5 hours, due to chatting which I find invaluable.
I will do forms for anyone who needs them free of charge, maybe a cup of tea is acceptable.
I support my neighbours, some younger, some older with shopping,cleaning,and gardening, and practical tasks.
In the past I have supported families going to court for child protection , and Domestic violence issues, given shelter to troubled teens, and brought my DGD up since the age of 4, fighting through High court for custody after my D D comitted suicide due to DV.
I have volunteered for Age Uk as a benefit uptake volunteer and helped set up a information and advice office
Dealing with form filling and advice