Age 20, Gloucester
I’ve never really had the support around me to get involved in ‘traditional’ volunteering, but I managed to craft my own opportunities. Mainly using the Internet to form the framework which didn’t exist in my local area, I have created, organised and administrated several online groups to provide support and a safe space for many people including some with issues such as autism, anger management and social isolation or reclusion.
A great success story for me involved a person with autism. When he first joined our group after it was recommended to him, he found it really hard to speak to people. However, after a couple of years in the group he now freely speaks to other members and even goes to parties with school friends! He says that our group was a huge helpful in easing his social transition.
Another massive positive is that social action has helped me to get my dream job with EDF Energy. At interview, I was told that my CV had stood out because of the initiatives I created. I’m now one of the most experienced members of the steering committee for the new EDF Energy Young Professionals Network, which allows me to encourage others to volunteer and take the lead in important roles.