What volunteering do you do?
I’ve been a Befriender for Blind Veterans since 2018, I’m matched with a member who lives nearby, I arrange to visit them in the comfort of their home. My main role is to provide a listening ear and talk about any similar interests or concerns of theirs. I record all my hours and visits on the Assemble app, so that the volunteer coordinator can be updated.
How did you start volunteering?
I started volunteering when I was unemployed and wanted to fulfil my time spent doing something good. I researched online, volunteering within my area and found https://doit.life which had lots of volunteering roles available. I would recommend others to use this site.
What made you volunteer for Blind Veterans?
I chose Blind Veterans mainly to meet disabled people who have served for our country in the armed forces. I don’t feel that ex veterans get enough support, so I wanted to show my gratitude by volunteering. I also wanted to improve my communication skills so that I could become a better listener and express myself more clearly when speaking. Most of the members that I’ve personally met are elderly, they ask for a Befriender so that their family can have a break from their caring, but also for the member to speak to someone new.
What is the biggest benefit of your volunteering?
I would say the biggest benefit for me would be the feeling I have after my visit. If I can get at least 1 person to start volunteering, just from sharing my story, I will feel like I’ve achieved something. The flexibility of my volunteering is an advantage, as I can volunteer as and when I want and don’t have to commit to certain days.
Read Tomas’s story on the next blog.