International Volunteer Day

Posted on 24th November 2017 by Steven Whyte

International Volunteer Day (IVD) is held each year on 5th December designated by the United Nations. IVD celebrates the efforts of volunteers all over the world and promotes all the hard work that they do. In this blog, I will talk about my experience of volunteering with Greener Kirkcaldy.

I started volunteering for Greener Kirkcaldy in August 2015 in the role of Media Volunteer which involves writing blogs, such as this one, and much more. Normally I write one blog a month, but on a few occasions, I have written more than that in a month. Also, I have attended some events that Greener Kirkcaldy has put on and written about them. I also attend monthly meetings to discuss what blogs can be written for the next month, so if you want to volunteer, but don’t have a lot of time, this could be an ideal role.

The reason I started volunteering with Greener Kirkcaldy was to put something new on my CV as I had been out of work for a spell. As time went on my reasons for staying on as a Media Volunteer changed. What I was doing wasn’t really helping me find work, but it was giving me the passion for writing about things again that I had lost for a lot of years, so for me that was a perfect reason to keep going. Reasons for volunteering could be different for everyone, and even though you might not get what you initially wanted out of volunteering, you might find you get something else out of it.

When I first joined Greener Kirkcaldy in August 2015, I was a complete novice. I didn’t know very much about climate change, food waste and energy saving but was lucky enough to learn as I went along by doing my own research or attending the excellent training that they put on. I like to think that I have gained a lot of knowledge now on these topics and I am much more confident and comfortable talking about them. So if you were like me when I first joined and are worried that you don’t know enough, then don’t be as you will get the time to gain all the knowledge you need.

Volunteering with Greener Kirkcaldy has done so much for me as an individual. It has allowed me to get out and meet new people which has resulted in my confidence growing and me becoming more comfortable around new people. Going to events such as Apple Day and Green Day and also going to Carbon Literacy training has helped me feel more comfortable in different environments. Also, as I touched on earlier, it has given me my buzz back for writing which was a passion of mine a few years back, so it’s been a great experience to find that again.

The people at Greener Kirkcaldy are a very friendly bunch and very good at welcoming new volunteers, which makes it all that much better to volunteer for them. They also provide certificates to volunteers who have reached certain milestones to say thank you which is a nice touch. The certificates are handed out at regular parties and gatherings hosted by GK for all the volunteers which are also great.

Even though International Volunteer Day is about recognising what volunteers do, I would like to take this chance to thank Greener Kirkcaldy for giving me a lot over the time I have been involved.

Greener Kirkcaldy offers a lot of different volunteering opportunities. You can become a Media Volunteer, Hub Volunteer, Waste, Climate Change or Energy Champion, or you can volunteer in the Community Garden and Orchard if you prefer to be outdoors. Visit our Volunteer with Us page to see more information. There is something for everyone.

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