Volunteers’ Week is a great opportunity for us to say a great big thank you to our amazing volunteers for the many ways in which they give their time to us. As well as thanking our volunteers, we’ve been speaking to them directly in an effort to find out what they like most about their GFS experience and why they decided to volunteer in the first place. It’s been fascinating to find out the numerous different reasons people have for volunteering, and the array of different aspects of volunteering they like the most.
We caught up with a few of the fantastic women who volunteer their time in some of the GFS groups based in the North East. In our interview with Maxine (GFS AYCC),Janice and Pam (both GFS Eldon), we asked them what their favourite moment or memory of volunteering with GFS was.
We were also able to speak to a few of the other volunteers dotted around the country. Here’s what they had to say…
Karen Grace, GFS Aigburth
“Volunteering with GFS Gives me a sense of pride in the community I live in.”
Poppy Winks, Trustee and volunteer at GFS Worksop
“I have been in GFS all my life! I’ve seen girls and young women have opportunities and be able to do things that before, they attended GFS, they could never have experienced. I have made lifelong friends, and GFS is my family. I genuinely believe that it is an honour and privilege to volunteer for an incredible organisation, with such a amazing history, going all the way back to 1875. I would encourage all women to be involved with GFS. Pass on you incredible knowledge and courage to a new generation on phenomenal women!”
Judy Rownson, GFS Wainfleet
“I have been volunteering for GFS for over 35 years and have been privileged to be part of the lives of many girls in that time as well as finding lasting friendships with other volunteers. Seeing the girls finding fun and friendship through learning new skills, visiting different places, playing games and cooking simple recipes is as rewarding now as it was when I started. GFS is a place where the girls can leave problems behind and be themselves and smiling faces make all the work worthwhile.
Often we do not realise the effect we have on the girls but recently a mother couldn’t wait to tell us that she had been to her daughter’s open evening and was told that she had suddenly really started to join in, participate in class and share her thoughts with everyone. She told the teacher that it was all because the girl had been coming to GFS. Not a bad result in three weeks attendance! Moments like these affirm all we do in GFS.”
Tigony Phillips, GFS Hackney
“You get a lovely sense of community. the staff and other volunteers are people you just really want to work with. There’s just a feeling that you get which makes you come away smiling from every session.”