I always get asked on why I volunteer, and why I spend most of my hours in a day helping others, writing blog posts or sending important emails, when I could be out socialising, working or doing other bits and bobs.
To be honest over the last three years I have managed to work 30+ hours a week, full time in education, a social life and hours of volunteering a week, how I managed to make it happen, somehow.
Before I started volunteering I had no self confidence, I had no dreams or hopes for the future, I had no friends, I had no courage and I was sleeping way too much.
I have had the chance to work alongside some amazing charities and individuals in projects, I have had the chance to talk to some of the biggest policy makers within the UK, I have spoken to key role models within the LGBT+ community, I have shared my own story, I have volunteered hundreds of hours to Pride and I spend most of my days doing what I know is best.
I was once a bullied, lonely and isolated kid, so I wanted to give back, which is exactly what I have done. I don’t want another teenager, child or adult to go through what I have been through, so I have worked my butt of to get to where I am.
Most people that I know, don’t find volunteering beneficial because they don’t get paid, or they don’t get anything out of it, which is completely wrong. I get to travel to different places, I get to go to different events, I get to meet some amazing people and I really believe that the only reason why I got into university was because of my volunteering hours. I may not of got paid, I may have paid for my own volunteering sometimes, but I gained a life, a purpose, an amazing group of friends, some amazing skills and a past that I am proud of.
If you have a spare few hours a week, volunteer at your local animal centre, your local charity shop, your local pride event, or maybe a college / university event. It will all be worthwhile, and you will enjoy yourself.