Penelope is a volunteer with our Helping Hands Service at Craigmillar. She is a mother of six and recently graduated from the University of the Highlands & Islands with a BSc in Psychology. Having experience as a support worker with Care in the Community and Barnardo’s, when Penelope saw Fresh Start was looking for volunteers she applied. As Penelope likes cooking and is keen to help people, our cookery classes gave her an ideal opportunity. She enjoys the social aspect of the classes, meeting the clients and seeing their sense of achievement when they finish the course. She says ‘Hopefully, the clients enjoy the social aspect of the class, enjoy the cooking and feel more confident about experimenting with recipes and cooking by the time they have finished’.
Janette has been volunteering with Fresh Start for 2.5 years. She began volunteering after she retired from teaching, and had heard about us through her school and church. Starting with our Hit Squads, she helped clients paint their new tenancies. As if that was not enough, she began helping with our Starter Pack Service, packing curtains and food packs. Janette enjoys volunteering ‘Friendly bunch of people to work with and I’ve learned lots of new skills’.
In the 2 years Jim has been volunteering with Fresh Start, he has made an enormous contribution. His main role is as a Starter Pack volunteer, sorting through donations and making up Starter Packs for the Crockery and Pots & Pans Packs. But we also rely on Jim three times a year to help us with the distribution of our Newsletters and Annual Review – a huge task. Jim began volunteering as he ‘wanted to put something back in to the community’.