change, grow, live – health and social care charity
Tan
Regional Volunteer & Peer Mentor Officer

“My background isn’t what you’d expect. I did hair and beauty in College, worked in that field for a while, then moved to financial services. After that I worked security in Birmingham, running the doors at night clubs. I’d be the one picking up the pieces – picking people up off the floor from the toilets, putting them in taxis. Nothing could shock me. Then I found out about the structured day programme in Birmingham, and started volunteering there. Following this I got a job as an arrest referral worker. I was really out of my comfort zone at first, but I thrived. A volunteer coordinator position came up and my line manager recommended me for it. At that time volunteers were just meeting and greeting in reception. Things started changing and we started turning things around. I used my own past experience to transform the role of the volunteer. Then last year I got the Regional Volunteer and Peer Mentor Officer role and the rest is history! If you look at how many staff at CGL have come from a volunteer background, it shows how crucial that knowledge and learning as a volunteer is. Volunteers are the future. I’m humbled that all the volunteers I’ve worked with have allowed me into their lives, to help them reach their goals. To see them develop and bloom – you can’t explain in words what that means. It’s priceless. People that are considering volunteering with us – don’t ever think you’re not capable of doing it. It’s about having the right heart, soul and passion. That is what the clients want to see. We can teach you the rest.”

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