Stories from volunteers

Stories from volunteers

Cherry

Cherry was selected as a regional winner for “The Marsh Award for Carers” in 2014.  This award recognises carers or former carers for their outstanding contribution for volunteering.

The Marsh Christian Trust is a grant-making body with both a grant-making and an Awards programme.  “The Marsh Award for Carers”, is run in partnership with the Carers Trust.

Cherry volunteers with us in many different areas.  She has said about her volunteering, “Carers Gloucestershire have trained and supported me during my four years, opening windows of opportunity to share and help others.  Interaction too with other volunteers not only with Carers Gloucestershire but those in hospitals and elsewhere where I have championed Carers Gloucestershire has been a valuable experience.  I believe we have several phases in our lives and must adapt and find enjoyment and fulfilment along the way.  I would say to anyone who wants to enrich their lives either by using existing skills or wanting to develop new ones, then try volunteering.  They may be surprised about how much they enjoy it!”

Trish

Trish has been volunteering with Carers Gloucestershire for over six years.  She has done a variety of different roles and is currently a Surgery Link Visitor, distributor and helps at displays and events.

Why did you decide to be a volunteer?  I was at a Carers Forum in Churchdown and had wanted to volunteer for a while. I was a registered Carer for my mother at that time and I wanted to give something back to the organisation and also to spread the word of this wonderful help that was available. Thankfully Nick introduced Roger and asked if any Volunteers would like to contact him, which I did!

What do you enjoy about volunteering?  I enjoy everything about it, at one time I was a Hospital Ambassador and Surgery Link Visitor.  The satisfaction I would get at the hospital of meeting people ‘face to face’ who were SO in need of advice and information and we provided that link! Also, when I meet my Practice Managers I have a sense of ‘self-worth’ and that I am making a contribution towards a large organisation in supporting Carers.

Is there anything you would say to others to encourage them to volunteer?  Volunteers will gain confidence, meet friends and feel as if they are helping in serving the Community that cares for other people. Satisfaction in knowing that they are spreading awareness of Carers Gloucestershire.  Volunteering at events can build on your own knowledge as well.

Julie

Julie has been a carer for her husband for many years and it was through Carers Gloucestershire that she found the help and support that she needed when she initially became a carer.  Being a volunteer helps her to feel that she can ‘give something back’. She volunteers as a surgery link visitor and helps out at our events.  As of summer 2015 she has been volunteering with us for ten years! She finds that being involved as a volunteer is satisfying and she knows she is helping others.  And she really enjoys the trips we organise, providing her with some time away from her caring responsibilities.

Natasha

Natasha decided to volunteer with us as a way of getting back into the workplace after a long period of illness and as a way of building herself back up.  She volunteers with the communication manager in the office on a weekly basis and through her volunteering she enjoys meeting a wide variety of people, learning new skills and knowing she was helping an organisation that helps others.  She said of her volunteering, “There are such a wide variety of opportunities available that there is sure to be something to interest you. Carers Glos are committed to their volunteers and really value the contribution they make.”.

If you want to find out more, chat further or meet up with our Volunteer Coordinator please contact Becky Hartwell on 01452 386283 or bhartwell@carersgloucestershire.org.uk.