Thursday, 8 September 2016

Volunteering.. Is it Benificial?!

I read in an article that it is more beneficial for retired people to volunteer than it is for young people. I completely disagree with this. Before I started volunteering I was shy and I would never question anything, but now I'm a lot more confident, I believe in myself and I am able to speak up for myself a lot more. It makes me feel like I'm doing a good thing,

When people ask why you volunteer you say because you want to help other people in the same situation as yourself. I volunteer for a Diabetes UK project based in Scotland called Just DUK 1t, which is a group  of young people with type 1, who have made a website, toolkit training and events for people of the same age, and lots of other amazing projects, which is run for young people by young people. It has opened up so many opportunities for me, and it is wonderful seeing the difference everyone makes, but mostly the social aspect of the volunteering is amazing.

Some of the amazing bunch from Just DUK 1t

When we meet up, we automatically have something in common. Type 1 Diabetes. There is never a dull moment, and when we get started talking it is hard to rein us in. When there is a task to be completed, we get distracted and end up going off topic, just because it is so easy to relate.

My little sister, Iona, asked me once why I volunteer for diabetes UK, and write a blog, because I don't get paid for it. I told her I love it because it allows me to be myself without people judging me. It helps me make a lot of good out of a bad situation, especially as I have met so many amazing people that help me through the hard times.

Me and some of the other volunteers with Dennis Robertson at the Scottish Parliament event

I have been given so many amazing opportunities through volunteering. I have been to the Scottish Parliament with Diabetes UK, I have been flown to Birmingham to speak at a conference, I have helped organise and hosted at Diabetes UK care event called "Type 1 in the City", just to name a few. It's exciting, and I get so much more out of it than if I was working in a normal job and earning.

Birmingham conference speaking about social media

I would say, if you ever get the opportunity to do voluntary work, jump. It may be daunting to start off with but it is so worth it in the end.

It has helped me gain so much confidence.

Me helping to host the event Type 1 in the city

And I've gained lifelong friends!

Some of the volunteers doing the Colour me Rad event

Until Next Time,

Alyssa x

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My name is Alyssa Faulkner. I am a Type 1 Diabetic Teen living in Scotland. I currently use a Medtronic insulin pump and an Enlite CGM, and am a volunteer for Diabetes Scotland.