Send a message of hope and postivity
Ordinarily, CHICKS’ retreats would be filled with children and young people from far and wide,…Read more
Most charities couldn’t do what they do if it wasn’t for their army of supportive volunteers, who freely give up their time, skills and experience to help their chosen cause.
But why do people volunteer? The answer, is for all sorts of reasons, including, to:
- give back
- thank a charity that’s close to their heart
- learn new skills and potentially boost your CV
- make a difference
- make new friends, connections and networks
- gain new perspectives and get inspired
- have fun
In this blog post, we spoke with Chris, a new volunteer (and who is also about to take on an epic fundraising adventure for CHICKS – paddleboarding 200km from Vik to Reykjavik in Iceland!): to find out what he has to say about his first-time experience of volunteering at a CHICKS respite break:
Why did you want to volunteer?
Ever since I found out through a friend about the work CHICKS does supporting disadvantaged children and young carers I have wanted to volunteer. Spending a lot of time doing outdoor activities myself, I know how much of a positive impact that can have on health and wellbeing so I was keen to get involved and help children who may not otherwise have the same sorts of opportunities as other children.
What does your role as a CHICKS volunteer involve?
I assist the Respite Break Leaders on break. My role was to be on hand to help the children on break enjoy new experiences and take on new challenges, but in a safe and supportive environment. I enjoyed the slightly mentoring aspect of my volunteering role. Talking with the children, taking part in activities and helping them feel more confident by encouraging, praising and listening to them.
What motivates you to volunteer?
I’ve always had a passion for helping people; it just makes me really happy knowing that I’ve helped others and have made a difference.
What do you enjoy most about volunteering?
There’s so much I enjoy about volunteering; having fun myself, getting involved with the activities, making new friends with other volunteers - but most of all just seeing the children grow with confidence, having fun and challenging themselves.
What sorts of skills do you bring to a volunteering role?
I’m an outdoor activity instructor myself so I’ve got experience when it comes to running activities, especially outdoor based ones such as mud-runs. I approach everything with 100% enthusiasm which in turn makes the children more enthusiastic themselves despite them maybe feeling a bit nervous.
What have you gained from volunteering?
I’ve gained much more confidence (I’ve always been a bit shy myself, especially in groups, so to feel more confident has been awesome). I also have a burning desire to come back again and volunteer with CHICKS because I loved every second of it!
Why do you think volunteering is a good thing to do?
I think it’s a great thing to do; you will have a lot of fun yourself and you’ll meet, see and learn about different walks of life – giving you a new perspective – which can only be a good thing!
Chris summed up his week by saying, 'The break was incredible, quite possibly the best week of my life and I am hoping to volunteer again soon!'
If you’re feeling inspired or motivated to consider volunteering for CHICKS, take a look at our Volunteering Page
for all our volunteer opportunities – we’d love to hear from you!