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Jean's Volunteer Story

Published on 27 March 2024 05:05 PM

Meet Jean, one of our committed Meet and Greet Volunteers who has been with us for nearly 20 years. We had the pleasure of interviewing Jean to learn what has kept her dedicated to our organisation for two decades. Next time you visit our Brigstock Office, you might just be welcomed by Jean. We're so grateful to have her in our Volunteering team!

Hi, please introduce yourself and briefly tell us about your volunteering experience with AUKC?

I’m Jean and I volunteer at Brigstock Road as a Meet & Greet volunteer. I have been volunteering in various roles with, first, Age Concern Croydon and then AUKC for over 18 years now and there has never been a dull moment!

What do you enjoy about volunteering with AUKC?

I enjoy volunteering because I get to spend time with the great team at AUKC and to chat with the diverse and many-storied older people who come to Brigstock Road for our services and activities.  Also, in every session I learn something new about the services and activities available to older people and how to access them, which is always interesting and adds to my confidence.

Tell us some of the highlights/ achievements so far.

One thing I really enjoy about volunteering is hearing from people who have felt cheered and supported through having contacted AUKC.  I have found that just taking the time to chat to someone for a few minutes but with genuine interest can make a big difference to them.

What advice would you give to someone interested in volunteering.

You need to have a genuine interest in supporting and listening to older people of all backgrounds; be able to make a regular time commitment; and be prepared to work to strict rules of confidentiality, equality etc. Ideally, look at the AUKC website to get an idea of what we do and read the volunteering pages.  If there is a role there which appeals - go for it!  If you are interested and committed, be assured that AUKC will give you the training and support you need to make a success of it.

Did you have any reservations before volunteering, if so, what were they?

Before volunteering I was concerned that I might not be able to complete successfully all the forms, training, DBS checks etc. required and that I might make terrible mistakes in dealing with AUKC’s clients and systems. But all AUKC staff are always helpful and supportive and encourage us to ask for help if needed.

Describe your experience in three words.

(Full of) interest, variety, fun.

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