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Cambridgeshire Mencap

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Volunteers!

17/09/2010

Give the most valuable gift you can – your time as a volunteer

Cambridgeshire Mencap needs 37 new friends!

Joe Ward has been volunteering with Cambridgeshire Mencap for just over 6 months. Joe often helps people one way or another and when he saw an advert about becoming a volunteer with Cambridgeshire Mencap he decided to give it a try. Joe explains, “I am a befriender with a chap called Kim, this involves going to his house, having a cup of tea with Kim and his family, catching up with who is going to win X-Factor before we head off to the driving range. We smack a few buckets of golf balls and have a laugh. It’s just like going out with one of your mates who needs a bit of your spare time.”

Kim has always wanted to play golf and develop his skills on the golf course. With Joe’s support Kim has been able to achieve his dream. Kim said “I really enjoy being part of the befriending scheme, I especially enjoy playing golf with Joe and I feel like I have really improved since he has been helping me. I am really pleased.”

The befriending scheme helps people with a learning disability to make friends and spend time with new people, helping them to get out and enjoy themselves. There are 37 people waiting for a volunteer befriender to help them to get out and try new things. It only takes a couple of hours a month and it really does change someone’s life. To find out more about becoming a befriender why not come along to our coffee morning on Wednesday 9th March at the Fenland Office, 87 High Street, March, from 10am – 12noon.

It’s really easy to become a volunteer with Cambridgeshire Mencap. As Joe explains, “After I enquired I arranged an interview with the co-ordinator. It wasn’t a real interview, just a nice friendly chat explaining what happens next. We had a few forms to fill in and some training sessions to attend. I met Kim with the co-ordinator a few times and that’s it, we’ve been going out to different places ever since; from firework displays, to playing golf and to the charities regular disco. It’s great to take Kim out to all these different places and I get to meet other volunteers at some of the events too.”

Joe said, “Everything we do is fun, Kim and I pick things to do together that we both enjoy. Watching Kim hit the ball past the 110 yard marker and seeing the big smile on his face makes it so worthwhile. I’m so glad I got in touch about volunteering, if you’re thinking about volunteering just do it, you’ll never regret it.”

To find out more about volunteering, please do get in touch. Simply come along to our coffee morning or call Suzanne at the Fenland Office on 01354 651166 or email Suzanne@cambridgeshiremencap.co.uk.



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