"Volunteering with Aspire has transformed my week and given me back a purpose."
Our volunteers really help make Aspire special. Each week our team of volunteers support service users and enjoy creative activities. Volunteers take on a range of duties from picking people up and dropping them off, helping to set up activities, making tea and coffee and most importantly sitting and talking with group attendees.
My volunteering experience with Aspire began in April 2022. I’d been looking online for local community groups that my grandma could attend; she’s happy to try new things. Everything I read was positive and everyone seemed to enjoy what was offered.
I was anxious after the covid lockdowns, a period of ill health and a stay in hospital, so I wanted to begin to rebuild confidence in being around people again. It’s been a slow process, but I now volunteer twice a week at 2 of the Aspire groups.
My role at the groups involves the usual setting up and welcoming people. Every week is varied as we form bonds with the members, guiding them through the different activities, getting stuck in and chatting about the good things and not so good things of life. Hearing the stories of the Aspire members is very humbling and I find that I learn so much.
As an Aspire Volunteer I feel that I’m supported to be the best version of myself. It feels like a family. I love that Aspire is such an accepting environment, we’re all learning and growing together. Everyone’s worth is celebrated! In a society where there are so many exacting standards, all our peculiarities are valued.
My advice for anyone wishing to find a volunteering role with people is to give it a go. Every group is slightly different, so there will be one that will be a good fit for you.
The future for me beyond Aspire looks very hopeful as eventually I look to working within the health and social care sector - it will need to be a person-centred role where I’m giving to and helping others.