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> Volunteering, Do you do it? Have you done it?
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Colm
post Feb 25 2016, 04:27 PM
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Next Wednesday evening I am starting some new volunteering which has taken close to a year to come to fruition.

It is a controversial programme where a select group of volunteers support someone who has been released from prison for sexual crimes so that they can integrate successfully back into society.

This is supported by the police and judicial system in Ireland. It has been in operation in the UK and Canada for decades.

The motto and main motivation for this organisation is No More Victims. Studies reveal that with no support, an ex-convict has a 70% chance of re-offending. With this support that figure drops to 30%.

The volunteering will take the form of weekly meetings with the "core member". There will be 5/6 of us there to ask him/her how they're getting on. What challenges they faced during the week? Many challenges are based on internal shame or stigma.

The core member volunteers for this also - they are not compelled to go through this. The programme goes on for 14 months and then the group disbands.

I had to do an interview and go through formal training before I was selected. I hope to gain substantial experience in this and perhaps work with marginalised or disadvantaged people in the future.

In the past I've taught mathematics and computers to mature students.
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Popchartfreak
post Feb 25 2016, 08:43 PM
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Very worthy!

Mine was easier - back in the day I used to help with youth evening group activities - kids of 7 or 8 up to 15/16, running the tuck shop, helping with games , keeping them entertained and stopping them going feral from over-excitement. My back-up plan was teaching for a career but it never happened (I was rubbish at maintaining order!).
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MauriahChristmaz
post Feb 25 2016, 10:13 PM
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I volunteered 3 years for the yearly summer camp in town loved the work we did there and the children loved it there.
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Winter Wombatlan...
post Feb 25 2016, 11:49 PM
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Sounds like a wonderful thing you're doing!

I can always recommend volunteering, it's quite essential to keep me busy when looking for a job. I currently volunteer at the British Heart Foundation three days a week, where I'm a bit of an all rounder as they are quite understaffed in general, but I mainly help in the warehouse by pricing furniture, cleaning up and some fairly heavy lifting. It's tiring and sometimes very challenging, but I do learn more each day and it gives me a free workout lol, it's fine to spend my time until something better comes along.

I've done a lot before though, my favourite was my time as a Paralympics Games Maker, I was a spectator assistant directing visitors to the Excel Centre, it did involve a lot of standing, was really fun and the people there were great, you really did feel the atmosphere of the games very well. I also did a course abroad in Perth, WA a few years back where I was a conservation volunteer, and well I did weeding and planting trees and that's it, but it was in AUSTRALIA and the atmosphere and feel of being so far from home was great. Volunteering has definitely made me more confident in myself and experience more in life, it's always great!

I'm trying to look for some volunteering in schools or working with children (well paid work ideally, but those are hard to come by without experience), especially as that's the career sector I'm looking to go into.
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Colm
post Feb 26 2016, 09:45 AM
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You all worked with children. I find it hard to deal with children. I have a niece who is 3 and having her around for the last few years is helping me bond with them easier.


I too thought about becoming a teacher - but it can be very stressful if you end up in a school in a disadvantaged area.
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TheGrinch
post Feb 26 2016, 09:55 AM
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I've volunteered with Make a Wish and Clan with me still helping out the latter.

In third year University I had to do 100 volunteer hours which was quite a brilliant experience! There's no bigger satisfaction then knowing you're making a positive impact on somebody else's life.
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Suedehead2
post Feb 26 2016, 10:17 AM
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That sounds like a great scheme Colm. On this side of the Irish Sea, the ghastly tabloid press makes it difficult for anything like that to operate. It doesn't matter how often you point to the reoffending rates, they will just dismiss it as being soft on offenders.
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Colm
post Feb 26 2016, 12:53 PM
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QUOTE(Suedehead2 @ Feb 26 2016, 10:17 AM) *
That sounds like a great scheme Colm. On this side of the Irish Sea, the ghastly tabloid press makes it difficult for anything like that to operate. It doesn't matter how often you point to the reoffending rates, they will just dismiss it as being soft on offenders.



Oh, I've had reactions from friends like " throw away the key", "castrate them". mad.gif
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bipolar angel
post Feb 28 2016, 11:41 AM
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QUOTE(LushLifeLee @ Feb 26 2016, 09:55 AM) *
I've volunteered with Make a Wish and Clan with me still helping out the latter.

In third year University I had to do 100 volunteer hours which was quite a brilliant experience! There's no bigger satisfaction then knowing you're making a positive impact on somebody else's life.



what was it like Volunteering for the make a wish foundation?

i'd guess at pretty emotional
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post Feb 28 2016, 01:30 PM
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I did a lot of volunteering during my last year of school for a Saltire Award, I helped out in a nursery for four hours a week among other stuff around my own school like 'buddying' a couple of first year pupils, classroom assisting, helping out at the additional support needs base, going on 'clean-up' days at the country park that's next to my old high school and I went out to my old Primary school to do the K'nex challenge with P6/7 kids, I'd do a lot of this during my free periods as well so I saw it more as something fun to do a lot of the time rather than volunteering, Did a few bag packs and a sports day thing at another nursery as well laugh.gif

I really want to get back into volunteering as even just those little things I did in sixth year felt very rewarding but I'm not at a point in my life where I can give my time to it at the moment, hopefully once I'm through uni I can look at doing it again happy.gif
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Slade
post Feb 28 2016, 05:23 PM
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I took part in a programme called NCS and for that I volunteered in a care home and set up an event for it. Extremely rewarding stuff after seeing how much the residents enjoyed the day!

I also used to volunteer in a charity shop (Cynthia Spencer Hospice) on weekends before I had to leave that when I got a job. Again something I really enjoyed!

As part of sixth form we had to obtain 100 hours of volunteering and that was mainly bits around school like helping out on Open Days.
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bipolar angel
post Feb 28 2016, 05:38 PM
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QUOTE(Jade @ Feb 28 2016, 05:23 PM) *
I took part in a programme called NCS and for that I volunteered in a care home and set up an event for it. Extremely rewarding stuff after seeing how much the residents enjoyed the day!

I also used to volunteer in a charity shop (Cynthia Spencer Hospice) on weekends before I had to leave that when I got a job. Again something I really enjoyed!

As part of sixth form we had to obtain 100 hours of volunteering and that was mainly bits around school like helping out on Open Days.



jade,

is that a care home for the elderly?

my sister does that, and she really enjoys it.

she told me a story once about this man at the home.. in his 90's with dimentia, but always remembers her name
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Slade
post Feb 28 2016, 05:43 PM
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QUOTE(bipolar angel @ Feb 28 2016, 05:38 PM) *
jade,

is that a care home for the elderly?

my sister does that, and she really enjoys it.

she told me a story once about this man at the home.. in his 90's with dimentia, but always remembers her name

It was a care home for the elderly! We had to come up with a project and a goal and mine was a fun games day (raffle/bingo etc) at this care home to help tackle isolation of the elderly. They loved it and said it was so nice to have company and fun games!

Glad to hear your sister enjoys it! It was an incredibly worthwhile experience.
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Mack'sXmasSack
post Feb 29 2016, 03:51 PM
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Does anyone volunteer at charity shops by the way?

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Yuki On Ice~
post Feb 29 2016, 04:17 PM
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QUOTE(Mack @ Feb 29 2016, 03:51 PM) *
Does anyone volunteer at charity shops by the way?


I have volunteered at Oxfam in the past, which I enjoyed doing till work for, it was a quiet shop, which made it all the more significant when someone actually bought something.

Have done less lately, it would be nice to do more in the future. It's not exactly volunteering, although my 'job' that is helping me get through my masters (for which I don't strictly get paid, rather get discounts on living expenses) is a mentor scheme for which I'm available as someone to talk to for first year students who might be living away from home for the first time, if they have any problems with being independent or adjusting to uni life, or any problems with life in general. Which is good, being there for a number of people who I now enjoy seeing on a weekly basis.
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bipolar angel
post Feb 29 2016, 04:56 PM
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QUOTE(Jade @ Feb 28 2016, 05:43 PM) *
It was a care home for the elderly! We had to come up with a project and a goal and mine was a fun games day (raffle/bingo etc) at this care home to help tackle isolation of the elderly. They loved it and said it was so nice to have company and fun games!

Glad to hear your sister enjoys it! It was an incredibly worthwhile experience.



and i now can't get the bingo song out of my head. (thanks!)

you know the one they do at bingo halls sometimes.. bingo bingo, get your dabbers out,

bingo bingo, don't forget to shout??

(not to mention several rude verses about prizes and the number calls)

guess what i'll be singing all night..
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Jacobauble
post Mar 1 2016, 06:31 PM
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I also volunteered in Oxfam (I think it helped me get my current job, they wanted me to talk a lot about it in the interview.)

I worked as a volunteer care worker for 6 months a couple of years ago in my gap year, I'd only just left home when I went. Well, I got accommodation and 60 a week but it didn't nearly match with the hours I was doing so it was voluntary really, I was doing 45 hours a week most of the way through so naturally I was sleep deprived and depressed for most of that time. It was a rewarding experience in some ways though, the people I worked with had learning disabilities like autism and downs and it was great to get that life experience, plus I made really good friends with some of the other volunteers. Would never want to do anything like that again mind you.
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jakewild
post Mar 1 2016, 06:35 PM
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i rly need to volunteer more

i volunteered at the London marathon for RSPCA and had a ball. basically just had to set up the cheer station and get all the cheerers there and then just cheer people on and hand out cheering things and cheer. loved it.
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