I wanted to volunteer for FSL as both myself and my two children had been clients of the service. My eldest daughter stayed with the service the longest and without that support I am not sure where any of us would be today. I felt I wanted to repay the charity in someway and to volunteer meant I could do this.
Volunteering made me feel like I was doing something worthwhile. I started by helping with admin in our busy office and that is a huge part of the successful running of the orgainsation. I was then asked to be involved in a new adult group and I felt a great sense of achievement as this quickly became a successful group and it allowed the charity to support a wider range of people. I then went on to see clients on a 1:1 basis. I was always valued and treated as one of the team and this contributed to the enjoyment of volunteering. At FSL the volunteers are not treated any different to the full-time staff, you are included in staff meetings and training.
By volunteering I was able to completely change my career path. I was able to dip my toe in to the world of support work and from starting as a volunteer in October 2015 I became a paid member of staff in April 2017. I gained experience and knowledge that was vital in giving me the confidence in my abilities to apply when a position came up. I have been supported in attending various training courses both internally and externally to further develop my skills.