Guest Blogger Rachel Gilchrist takes time out to tell us about her experiences of volunteering with the Age Scotland Helpline
I began volunteering at the Helpline in December last year during my final year studying law in Edinburgh. I decided that I wanted to do something fulfilling in my free time and came across the volunteering role at the Age Scotland Helpline which sounded like the perfect combination of rewarding, enjoyable and challenging. And it is! I couldn’t have expected a more welcoming place to spend a Friday morning.
Since being at the Helpline I have learned so much about the issues affecting older people in our country and about the important issues in our society in general. My friends are all absolutely sick of me ranting and raving about welfare benefits and care home costs! In particular. A talk from the Highland Rainbow LGBT group for older people was incredible and inspired me to want to change the world somehow.
I’ve also gained so many skills that are important for general life and extremely useful for my future career like communication and research. Generally, it is a great feeling to know that I’ve helped someone, even if it is just to find a phone number for them or simply listen to their problem. After all, the older people in Scotland have contributed to society so much throughout their lives and the least I can do is be on hand to offer information and advice in times of need.
Inspired? Age Scotland are currently looking for volunteers to work with the Helpline, why not drop us a line.