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Post | May 2023 | For volunteers | 2 min read

Abby's volunteering story

Written by Laura Bazley

16 year old Abby started volunteering as part of the Duke of Edinburgh programme and soon discovered it was a rewarding way to help people in her community and gain valuable work experience. She shares her story below:

“I volunteered in the café and on reception at Victoria Park Community Centre. I served meals to people at the over 55 Lunch Club and got to talk to them about their day. I also served hot drinks, operated the till, cleaned tables and dealt with visitor enquiries.

“As an additional member team, I help the service to run smoothly and this allows us to give more of our time to the customers.

“I have also volunteered at Headway Somerset, where I supported their Brain Injury Day Clinic. I helped staff to organise activities for attendees and served them lunch from the café.

“I have learnt lots of new skills and the experience has broadened my horizons regarding my future studies and career. It has given me a real insight into supporting others.

“I would recommend that others volunteer as you learn a lot about yourself as well as gaining valuable experience.”

Helen Flatt, Victoria Park Community Centre’s Administrator, comments:

"It was great to have additional help from Abby. She was very friendly and the customers enjoyed interacting with her as she was very approachable.”


Carol Authers, Duke of Edinburgh Operations manager at Somerset Council, tells us:

“Across Somerset we sign up 2,600 young people to the award each year, all of whom need to do at least an hour of volunteering a week as part of their award. The choice of activities can be varied from helping an elderly or disabled neighbour, to working in a charity shop, or supporting disabled riders to helping younger age groups at grassroots football. The choice is endless but the goal is the same – to make a difference to people’s lives and to help the local community.

"As award approvers we really enjoy reading about the activities that have been done and are often inspired by the choices young people make. So, if you want to make a difference and are between 13-25, why not give it a go? You might surprise yourself.”

If you would like to give volunteering a go, click on the link below. 

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