My Experience as a Volunteer for Age Concern Epsom & Ewell
by Rosa Ebbens
My first experience of Age Concern Epsom & Ewell was when, at 75, I retired form my part-time job as a Secretary/Receptionist for a local Double Glazing company, and looked for something ‘worthwhile’ to do with my time. My children were all grown up and married, with children of their own so I applied for a part-time ‘paid’ job with Age Concern.
Unfortunately, before I could attend the interview I had a fall, broke my ankle and was out of circulation for a month, but having read my application they invited me to a ‘Function for Volunteers’ which I was able to attend in April 2007. This led to an invitation to become a Volunteer working in the Head Office at Epsom Town Hall as one of a team of ladies running the Transport Desk. Each volunteer worked one morning a week so Monday- Friday was always covered, and we each manned the phone, selected suitable volunteer drivers for the appointments booked, and kept a record of all requests filled, and yet to fill.
After years of experience in Recruitment i was familiar with dealing with people on the phone, but had yet to learn how best to best to help the elderly, hard of hearing, anxious people who needed our help. The lovely team of full time, permanent staff in that office made me welcome from the word go, and gave me lots of helpful advice. They are a caring, hard-working, friendly group of people, and I found that my Tuesday morning became the highlight of my week.
Now, after five years I still love my job at Age Concern Epsom & Ewell, though I no longer run the Transport Desk as this has become fully computerised, but now I happily help with other equally necessary jobs like telephoning any of our elderly clients who might need help on a variety of topics. The team of full-time colleagues changes from time to time, but the welcome I still receive from them is wonderful, and my time with them is still the highlight of my week.
Age Concern Epsom & Ewell is a Charity so they rely on the wonderful help they get from their volunteers who range from Befrienders, Drivers and Moment Makers all of whom give their time, expertise and friendship to the elderly with no remuneration except expenses and the joy of doing something worthwhile. I encourage anyone looking to Volunteer in the local borough to consider this wonderful Charity, you will not regret it.
To find out how you can become a Volunteer please click here.