Why join our volunteer team? Jane’s new starter for 10!
Demand for independent advice is growing and we need to strengthen the CAEE volunteer team. Here are 10 reasons why you should consider joining us, in the community’s interest and your own.
Jane Sheils is Volunteer Publicity Adviser at Citizens Advice Epsom & Ewell.
In August I answered 10 questions about what it means to become a Citizens Advice volunteer. Now I’m looking at the benefits of sharing your time and expertise with people in genuine need of good advice.
1) Keep the brain active
Particularly after retiring from a busy work life. It’s now standard health advice for older people to maintain challenging brain activity.
2) Keep up work skills and confidence
While job-hunting or after retiring. Our volunteer advisers use up-to-date online tools and are essential partners in the production and sharing of a near-real time national database.
Volunteering at Citizens Advice Epsom & Ewell
More information and how to apply
3) Boost employability and CV
We try hard to help volunteer colleagues make their time with us compatible with, and a direct benefit to, their working life.
4) Great work experience for students and work returners
We have a proud tradition of giving students new experiences – and gaining from their energy as digital natives!
5) Learn new life skills
Being able to directly support clients is great for building confidence and empathic skills.
6) Give something back to your community
Our CEO spoke recently of reaching a point in her career as a barrister when she wanted to do more and give more. She said: ‘It had to be in public service work – an area where I could be involved in representing the interests of others less able to do so themselves.’
7) Support those in need, help change people’s lives for the better
To see how this works read about our impact and the gratitude of clients (below).
8) Be challenged by facing and solving different problems.
Every client’s experience is unique and presents intractable challenges. Frequently there is no obvious answer or way to help them find their way forward. But with training and constant team support our volunteer advisers soon develop valuable new human skills.
9) Meet and make friends
Teamwork is central to our work. Many colleagues make long term friends during their time with us.
10) Get the feel-good factor
Volunteering is known to be personally rewarding. In 2019 NCVO, an association of voluntary groups, published research* about the benefits of volunteering. They said ‘Volunteers feel they benefit from their volunteering in a number of ways, with enjoyment being the highest rated (93%). Those who volunteer frequently particularly feel these benefits’.
I would have checked ‘Strongly Agree’ to that research question and I know my CAEE colleagues would too. Here is how to apply.
* More about our impact on the Epsom & Ewell community here.
** Time well-spent: a national survey on the volunteer experience, NCVO (National Council for Voluntary Organsiations), January 2019.