Safeline are hugely appreciative of the 50 or more volunteers, who dedicate their time to protecting and supporting people affected by sexual abuse and rape. Our volunteers are one of the most important resources Safeline has and they get involved in a whole host of activities including counselling, administration, fundraising, promoting the charity and as Trustees. Without these caring and committed individuals, Safeline simply could not protect and support the thousands of people it does.
As demand for the services Safeline provides increases, the need for volunteers has never been greater. National and local, statutory services are struggling to meet the increased demands for support and Safeline is stepping in to help fill the gaps.
Volunteering is known to have fantastic social and personal benefits for an individual, as well as being a crucial part of the success of charities worldwide. Six fantastic benefits of volunteering include:
- Builds Community
You strengthen your community and your social network when you volunteer. You make connections with the people you are helping, and you cultivate friendships with other volunteers.
- Ends Loneliness
45% of people in the US and the UK admit to feeling lonely. On top of that, one in ten adults reports that they have no close friends. Loneliness and social isolation are two of the most severe epidemics in the world today. The simplest way to reverse this? Volunteer!
- Increases Socializing
Socially, the benefits to volunteering show up quickly and have long-term effects. Social interaction improves mental and physical health, the benefits of consistent socialising include better brain function and lower risk for depression and anxiety.
- Improves self-esteem
When teens or young people volunteer, the develop self-esteem, confidence and feelings of self-worth. Consider the advantages to volunteering for teens and young adults who suffer from social anxiety and depression. Volunteering could be life changing.
- Improves school and college experience
For school aged kids, volunteering builds social skills and develops awareness. High school students volunteer to boost their college applications, and college students volunteer to improve their job search post-graduation.
- Volunteering adds fun to your years
Volunteering and freely giving your time, energy and resources to people and causes around the world can create change on a global scale. It is amazing to think that one person’s efforts can change the life of someone else somewhere in the world.
If you are ready to make friends, improve your mental and physical health, and maybe develop new skills along the way, start volunteering. You can change your life and the lives of others when you do. Don’t overlook the benefits of volunteering. Embrace them!
During 2016, Safeline supported over 8,000 people, this could only be done with the support of its volunteers. With their help, they have enabled the charity to keep waiting lists for counselling to an absolute minimum and avoided the need for the charity to limit the amount of counselling provided to each survivor; both aspects are crucial to a successful recovery.
Sexual abuse and rape is a very difficult subject and unfortunately, it is prevalent within all communities, the people who volunteer for Safeline have stated that they do it for the following reasons:
- They can give something back to an organisation that has impacted positively on a person’s life, either directly or indirectly.
- They can make a difference to the lives of others
- They can help others less fortunate or without a voice
- They feel valued and part of a team, this is hugely important to Safeline
- They gain confidence and self-esteem
- Volunteeering gives a sense of purpose and helps to improve your own wellbeing
For some, volunteering at Safeline helps support professional development:
- Qualified counsellors can expand their skills, knowledge and experience, with counselling you never stop learning
- Final year counselling students often do their work experience element of their course at Safeline and continue to work with Safeline well beyond that
- They join a network of like-minded people
- Continuous Professional development is free and of an exceptionally high quality
Safeline recognises the importance of its volunteers to the work it does and invests a lot of time and effort to ensure they feel valued. That includes paying for travel expenses, investing in continuous professional development, providing management and clinical supervision and regularly updating them on how the charity is performing.
Safeline’s approach to managing volunteers generates high levels of loyalty amongst its volunteers, many have worked for the charity for more 10 years.
In recognition of its approach in managing volunteers, Safeline was awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service in 2015, the highest award given to local volunteer groups across the UK in recognition of its outstanding work in the community.
In receiving the award, the Lord Lieutenant of Warwick commented:
‘’I would like to congratulate Safeline in receiving this year’s Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, in recognition of their fantastic achievements. The hard work and commitment that goes into the work of this charity is surpassed only by the passion and motivation of the individuals who volunteer. I hope Safeline continues to inspire others to get involved and make a positive impact so that
we can continue to build a bigger, stronger society.”
We wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for our fantastic team. If you’d like to find out more about volunteering at Safeline, we would love to hear from you. Alternatively, if you’d like to stay informed about our latest news, upcoming events and volunteering opportunities you can sign up to our newsletter.