Olivia's volunteering journey with St Andrew's

This week is Volunteers’ Week, an initiative to celebrate the incredible contributions of volunteers from around the world. As a charity, we know just how important volunteers are to us and our patients.

We want to appreciate the volunteers at St Andrew’s by shining a spotlight on them for everything that they do. Today, we share Olivia’s story, where she details how she became a volunteer whilst working for us and completing her MSc!

Olivia decided to volunteer as she knew the opportunity would be invaluable in gaining the experience she needed to become an Assistant Psychologist (AP). “I wanted to gain the skills and experiences required to fulfil the role in a full-time position in the future”.

“I did not expect to gain as much as I did from the role. I was able to be a real part of the ward and assist alongside the current AP in their day to day duties. I learnt so much from shadowing them and being able to assist in groups and admin-based work, all valuable skills I could then apply to a future role”.

Volunteering can enhance many skills that people need in their careers, but also their day-to-day lives, something that Olivia found out first hand. “I learnt how to engage with service users and manage different situations. I learnt the skills required to run group sessions and the specific skills required to do some of the reports an AP is required to do. I also developed my confidence and communication skills”.

Olivia advises anyone interest in volunteering at St Andrew’s to take the plunge, and reap the rewards. “I would 100% recommend volunteering. The experience I had volunteering was brilliant, I met so many lovely people and learnt so much. I do not think I would have got an AP role without having volunteered”.

Olivia is just one of many volunteers we have, and all their support and help are inspiring. From everyone at St Andrew’s, we’d like to say a huge thank you to our volunteers for their incredible generosity, and look forward to seeing more volunteers with us!