Q: Have you ever volunteered before?
A: I have always been too busy working. Modern day life is difficult, having to juggle jobs. However I had finished work and it was actually one of the Trustees of the charity (who I know personally) who put me in touch with Hand in Hand. She thought that I would be a good fit. I was actually the very first Hand in Hand volunteer to come aboard.
I had time on my hands, and the nature of the volunteering means that you can go down memory lane with the scheme members you support – it’s an interesting way to spend your time. They seem to have fun, and I actually get so much out of it.
Q: What do you enjoy about being a volunteer?
A: I’m having a great time, I really am. What I find is that that the scheme members are similar to me and my interests.
What’s great is that the scheme members, they speak my language and I speak theirs. We can communicate and reminisce about shared history and it’s wonderful.
We do often reminisce together, about the War and about the past, what once was and what is different now. It’s a great way to meet new people and to have a connection with the community. It’s like making a new friend – you get to learn all about each other.
I used to work in a bakery until I was fifteen, which is where my love for baking wedding cakes as a hobby came from. I occasionally make scones and cakes from my scheme members, too. I left home at fifteen and joined the army at eighteen – being in the army means I have lots of stories to tell and share with my scheme member, and they tell me their own tales from service. After this chapter of my life, I owned a local business.
I started volunteering because I think that it’s the time to give something back.
This blog post is part of national Volunteers’ Week (1st – 7th June 2019). #VolunteersWeek – get involved and #ShareYourStory!