Kelly joined VAST as a volunteer 3 years ago. Her journey with us started after ten years of unemployment and when she was suffering from various health issues and low self-esteem. Initially Kelly was not sure what she could offer VAST but she did know that as a single mum she wanted to make a positive change to her life.
Kelly started to volunteer in VAST’s office and was immediately assigned a volunteer mentor to support her. Over the weeks and months that followed Kelly’s confidence grew. In addition to the backoffice support she began to help cover the reception which, as a front facing role, involved interaction with the general public and clients where she was regularly required to deal with issues and provide solutions on a 1-2-1 basis.
Throughout this time Kelly received support from her volunteer mentor. This consisted of an initial consultation to agree what Kelly wanted to achieve in terms of her personal development within the organisation along with establishing a reasonable time frame to move towards these goals. This was followed by monthly sessions which supported Kelly to grow in confidence and resulted in her ultimately taking on more responsibility and new challenges.
Kelly says “Without the mentoring sessions I’m not sure how I would have progressed in the organisation. The icing on the cake is that I am now in a paid job that I really enjoy! Knowing that I was having monthly meetings with my mentor meant I had someone to talk through my concerns and issues and agree positive actions for me to tackle these problems. I feel so much more confident and am more able to recognise my value in the work place and feel this is because of the support my Mentor gave me”.