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The beauty of volunteering

9 OCTOBER 2018 - SOPHIE - STUDENT LIFE

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The beauty of volunteering is remarkable. When you give your time to help others, you receive so much more in return. Volunteering not only offers help to organisations (many of which wouldn’t able to function without volunteers) and those in need, but it also offers volunteers the opportunity to grow and develop in regard to how to better understand others and we ourselves learn new things, experience alternate ways of living and gain experiences which could benefit our careers.

I started volunteering in my third and final year of university, though I wish I had started sooner. I first volunteered with Volunteering Matters as part of the Knowledge Equals Opportunities Programme which was delivered to families with primary school-aged children, engaging particularly with those from migrant communities.

By engaging with migrant families, I was provided with an insight to various cultures and I often worked one-on-one with the parents’ helping them to develop their language and literacy skills. Our one-on-one sessions not only developed the parents’ confidence and self-esteem but mine also.

I am currently volunteering with Anglia Care Trust as an Independent Visitor. Independent Visitors are volunteers who are matched with children and young people who are particularly vulnerable, and they make a commitment to spend time with the young person each month.

I highly recommend volunteering. I am now equipped with a lot more skills, knowledge, training and experiences than before I started being a volunteer and it makes me happy knowing I am helping and benefiting others’ lives. I

mentioned Volunteering Matters and Anglia Care Trust, but these are just two organisations who I’ve volunteered with so far, there are many more organisations who require volunteers also. If you are a volunteer or have been, share your experiences with us in the comments!

 

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