Benefits of volunteering with the LGF
There are so many reasons to volunteer. Volunteering can help you develop your personal skills and enhance your CV. Employers are often impressed by volunteering experience, and some of our volunteers who are currently unemployed give their skills while looking for a new job.
John who volunteered with us for a year told us:
“After being made redundant, I applied to volunteer so that I could contribute my skills to a good cause, stay in a regular routine and also have something to put on my CV. I was recently offered a job, and the interviewers fed back that my volunteering experience had given me extra marks on my application form.”
Volunteering can help you make new friends, give something back to your local community and make a difference to people’s lives. ‘The gift of giving’, however you choose to give and regardless of how much you give, is well-documented to increase your state of happiness and mental wellbeing.
Alex, one of our existing volunteers told us:
“Volunteering is enabling me to rediscover myself, re-connect and build confidence. I feel so elated at achieving my potential - I wish I could bottle-up that feel good feeling.”
The Lesbian & Gay Foundation can offer you:
- A full induction including our key aims, our campaigns and services.
- Access to training opportunities
- Support from a designated volunteer supervisor, as well as a full-time Volunteer Manager who oversees the volunteer programme
- Regular social events, such as a walk in the countryside or a karaoke night in the Manchester Gay Village
- Annual awards ceremony to celebrate all volunteer achievements
One of our volunteers, Vicky, says:
“I’d never accessed services at the LGF before volunteering but an added bonus of being involved is that I always come away from meetings feeling positive and really relaxed which I think must be down to how nice and welcoming everyone is.”
Many people who have used our services have gone on to become volunteers.
Chris told us:
“Before starting the befriending scheme I was in crisis. I was suffering from depression and felt very isolated. I had no support network.
“I had tried to ‘come out’ to someone at work and had been received very negatively, that was tough.
“I believe the befriending programme saved me. It gave me the kind of life I wanted. There is no way I would be as stable and happy as I am without it.
“As a result I wanted to give something back. I wanted to help people like Frankie had helped me. I signed up to be a befriender and support those who had been in a similar position to me. I also help out on the Village Angels scheme and really love being part of The LGF.”
No matter how volunteers contribute their time, our volunteers change lives for the better. Without the support of The Lesbian & Gay Foundation, many lesbian, gay and bisexual people living in Greater Manchester and beyond would be isolated, experiencing poor mental health, abusing substances, and feeling unable to come out.
We still have so many more people to reach and support; there is still so much work to do. Lesbian, gay and bisexual people are still being battered and bruised because of who they love, and we won’t rest until this is no longer the case. We are only able to do this with the support of our volunteers. What difference can you make through volunteering?
“The biggest thing about volunteering for LGF is being made to feel like you're making a positive contribution whatever you're doing. When you've really struggled with your mental health and self-worth, it's hard to explain just how big an achievement that is.”