Give something back this year
Published on 15 January 2020 09:27 AM
The Christmas decorations have been packed safely away, the mince pies all eaten and the sequinned party outfits put to the back of the wardrobe… Christmas may be done and dusted for another year but a New Year and all the possibilities it brings with it lays before us.
For many, a New Year is the start of new beginnings, adventures and a great time to take on a new challenge. So why not embrace the roaring twenties with a new activity that not only helps you develop new and existing skills and gives you valuable work experience but that also allows you to give something back to people in your community, meet new people and make friends along the way?
Volunteering for Age UK Norfolk
At Age UK Norfolk we are dedicated to helping everyone make the most of later life by providing companionship by telephone, advice and support for those older people who need it most. We rely heavily on volunteers – and we are on the lookout for anyone out there who can spare a few hours a week to help.
There are a plenty of opportunities across all of Norfolk, waiting for potential new volunteers to join our friendly team. Megan Wilby, our Volunteer Coordinator, says that volunteers can volunteer as much or as little as their time allows and, “If you only have half an hour a week to spare you could make a call to an older person in Norfolk who may be lonely or isolated from home. If you have a little longer you could visit an older person and help them to manage their finances so they can remain independent for as long as possible.
“If you have even longer, you could train to be part of answering one of the 24,472 calls that our information and advice help line deals with in an 18 month period.”
What our Volunteers say
Seven years ago, Kathleen (Kath) McCarthy make a decision to change her career and found herself looking for local volunteering opportunities to help build her CV.
After finding out about Age UK Norfolk’s Telephone Befriending service, which offers companionship by phone for lonely older people, Kath signed up and has been volunteering for the charity ever since. “I may need support myself as I grow older and I’d like to think that somebody will be there for me, to give me a call to brighten my day,” says Kath.
When asked about the calls that she makes to older people in Norfolk, Kath says, “They really enjoy the social contact and I like talking to people too. Often people mention other issues such as struggling with their heating fuel costs or issues with care and I’m able to refer them to other departments within Age UK Norfolk such as our Information and Advice team or the Surviving Winter Appeal for additional support.”
“I’m getting older and who knows, I may need the service myself one day!”
Social opportunities for volunteers
Volunteering for Age UK Norfolk is a great way to meet new people; we’re a friendly bunch and we have our very own social club for staff and volunteers with regular events throughout the course of the year, from ten pin bowling to quiz nights and abseiling for charity!