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Feeling good as a volunteer knowing you’ve helped

Len Pendle

Published on: April 30, 2024

What did you volunteer as?  

    I have volunteered to provide support and provide workplace training for young homeless in London when I was working. 

    Since retirement I have been a Listening Volunteer with Samaritans and more recently as a NED with Compass.

    Worst bits?

      Realising that I was trying to impose my own beliefs on the youngsters I worked with and not understanding what they really needed. 

      The first time I was on the phone with a person actively committing suicide. 

      Best bits?

        When I finally understood how to really help homeless youngsters in a way that also fitted with their view of the world. 

        Doing the training at Samaritans which equipped me with skills needed to be an effective listener and the ability to support my colleagues. 

        Being able to provide support to a lot of people with all types of problems in their lives and feel that I have been able to make a real difference in their lives. You can’t help feeling good every time someone makes a decision to change their situation or just says thank you. 

        How did it help you in your personal development/career. Or a lasting impression?

          I have learned some great skills that I can apply to my every day life with friends and family as well as part of my volunteering. You get to work with some great people and make a difference to the lives of people going through tough times.  I would highly recommend volunteering in any form that fits with your life and availability.