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24th Sep 2018 16:28:23
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I am new to this site and so still finding my way around. I didn't mean to post so soon but this question touched a nerve. I am due to retire next year but hoping to do a couple of days in my existing team. My OH had to retire due to ill-health and once he started to feel he wanted useful to society we looked at voluntary work. Oh my stars, what an eye-opener. What ever happened to couple of hours a week helping? One extremely well-known older supporting charity expected a personal assistant to run their office which meant general admin stuff, taking minutes and distributing agendas plus diary management. Hello, get a secretary and pay them. Another expected admin support at least two days a week. Some charity shops are notorious for their bad treatment of volunteers in our area with paid staff belittling the voluntary staff and demanding more and more hours.

I have done voluntary fund-raising work for years and enjoyed it (I can fold a raffle-ticket with my eyes shut). I stopped when a new regional director of the national charity was appointed, they lived in the village where we held the majority of our events and they had never attended any of them. Was quite happy to tell us how to run things though once they were in post.

Sorry, I have gone in a bit. I think paid employees of organisations, charities need to take a step back and realise that without the voluntary staff they would struggle. The nicest thing I heard was a local church who held a high tea for their volunteers to show their appreciation of the work they do.
7th Mar 2018 14:22:52
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I was fortunate enough to volunteer for 6 yrs. when my health was a bit better than it is now.
It was a local group in my area of the US called the St. Vincent dePaul Society. I served as President when the former President passed away. 12 wonderful volunteers assisted me.
Our goal was to provide food, clothing, gasoline for their old vehicles and diapers for babies.
Vouchers for furniture such as beds, dining tables and chairs were also provided when the need arose.
I LOVED the work and It was lifting a hand to the needy and showing them the love of God.
We always enclosed a little note with the groceries to let them know that someone cared about them.
7th Mar 2018 05:34:44
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Hello there. According to me, volunteering is one of the best things that one can experience once in a lifetime. Where one can make a huge difference in the life of the needy ones. I haven't experienced volunteered yet, but one of my friends have shared a life-changing experience of mission humanitaire, he also suggested me to have a peek at this website to get more details about humanitarian missions and join as a volunteer to make a difference.
28th Jan 2018 14:18:05
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Hi Kayce47,
I tend to agree with Lochinvar's comments. Many years ago, I had a voluntary job in a hospital, mainly in the A&E department which was at times interesting, horrific and sad. Once the medical staff knew who I was, I was allowed to look through the casualty cards to find patients for relatives who sometimes came into the department singly or in huge groups. It enabled the medical staff's time to be used more efficiently as they could tend to the patients whilst someone else traced the "lost" relative. It was in this environment that I met with some hostility from porters and ambulance staff who thought it was okay for the volunteers to make a cup of tea for them but not push a wheelchair or a trolley if no-one else was available.
I do quite a bit of voluntary work for my local church ranging from taking the minutes at meetings to cleaning and flower arranging. I still cringe at the question "Can you just do this, that or the other" because while it may take the questioner only 20 seconds to ask, it can take the volunteer 20 minutes, or usually a lot longer, to do the task.
I also volunteer at a local primary school listening to the children read - some parents either don't have the time or cannot be bothered to listen to their children. It's an absolute joy to see the progress the children make and recently a little boy made my day when he came running over to me asking if he could be the first to read to me that afternoon. Only 6 months previously, he had been such a shy, little 4 year old who sat with clenched fists, made no eye-contact.and responded to questions either with a nod or a shake of his head. Now, he hardly ever stops chatting and is a fluent reader - I'm not claiming credit for his transformation but I do feel that I have been a part of it. 🙂

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