Volunteering is a great way to learn new skills, challenge yourself, create a sense of purpose and gain confidence all whilst making a difference in the community. It is also known to improve mental health and wellbeing, so that helping others also helps you.
Finding the right volunteer opportunity is very important, volunteering should only be a positive experience.
With so many choices and options, it can sometimes seem a bit overwhelming knowing where to start. We will ask you about your skills and experiences, and consider any limitations when deciding the type of volunteer opportunity you want to get involved in. Together, we will look at the reasons why you would like to volunteer; whether you are looking to take on a new challenge and learn new skills or simply just want to help; we want to make sure you get the most out of volunteering.
We have a growing range of fantastic volunteer opportunities for you to get involved, here are a few options below, however there is a lot more information available when you download Your Volunteer Welcome Pack or chat to our Volunteer Team.
Isolation can often be associated with sight loss. If you have a free hour or two, weekly or fortnightly, and enjoy engaging with others on a one to one basis, you can become a Home Services Volunteer. Our Befrienders, Readers (help with correspondence) or Shoppers (a shopping buddy), offer companionship and help people with sight loss to maintain their independence. These roles are flexible, and although client led, you can arrange visits around your home and work commitments.
Becoming a Driver, Social & Activity Helper or joining one of our Volunteer Committees, is a great way to meet new people and develop lasting friendships. These roles would be suited to those who are looking for a regular role, with flexible time requirements. You can spend up to an hour a week driving members to their local group or activity, spend up to 2 hours helping run the group activities or spend 3-4 hours organising our local activities by joining a committee.
Looking to improve your fitness and help others at the same time? Our Tandem Pilots (MK only), Walking Guides (MK & Aylesbury) and Bowls Club Helpers (Aylesbury only) donate their time to help others enjoy exercise and keep themselves fit and healthy too. Tandem and Bowls both operate during the week, however, if you only have time available at weekends, then our Walking Guide role would be ideal.
Technology can be daunting but can also bring tremendous benefits to someone with sight loss. You don’t have to be a tech guru, but if you are adept in using technology, you can utilise your knowledge by providing Digital Technology Support, or perhaps you would like to put your Admin skills to good use and help our office staff. Fundraising can be good fun, and a great way to engage with your local community. Our Fundraising Volunteers raise awareness and donations in their local areas. These roles are ad hoc so can be combined with other roles or are ideal for those who have limited time.
There’s nothing wrong with taking your time to test out your volunteer opportunity first. Your first couple of months are considered a trial period to find out if the volunteer opportunity is really the right one for you.