Why not make 2024 the year you get involved with volunteering?
Volunteering is a great way to make a positive impact, develop your personal skills and gain exciting new experiences!
My Life My Choice is dedicated to supporting our members to engage in activities they love. We believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to enjoy life to the fullest and create cherished memories. Through Gig Buddies, we pair a member with a volunteer to go out do things that they both enjoy, such as the theatre, a football match or grabbing a coffee! Volunteers also get the opportunity to support at events such as music festivals.
Here are our top five reasons why you should consider volunteering with MLMC this year:
Try new things and meet new people
Volunteering is a great way to meet people that you might not have met otherwise. Paired with your Gig Buddy who shares the same interests as you, you can try new things together, as well as build connections with our existing team of friendly volunteers and members!
By being a volunteer, you will gain a whole new skill set which will enhance your CV. You can build on skills such as organisation, time management and communication. It’s also a great opportunity to build your confidence!
It’s good for your mental health
Research has shown that volunteering can improve your mental health by reducing stress and increasing feelings of positivity and relaxation. It can be incredibly fulfilling, resulting in increased self esteem and reduced rates of anxiety and depression.
Make an impact
Sadly, many adults with a learning disability report feeling lonely and isolated. By being a Gig Buddy, you can make a huge impact on someone’s life, encouraging them to get out and experience new things that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to.
Most importantly, being a Gig Buddy is fun! Together, MLMC Gig Buddies have attended festivals, musicals and much more, creating memories and life-long friendships.
Meet James, one of our amazing Gig Buddies!
Being a volunteer for My Life My Choice has been a really enriching experience. It has been a privilege helping to include people to participate in activities that they are passionate about but have for one reason or another found it difficult to go by themselves or with friends. I find that after every meeting with my Gig Buddy, I feel very uplifted and grateful for the experience, and find that I have been able to relax and switch off from everyday concerns in order to be present for my Gig Buddy.
Witnessing the joy and enthusiasm of individuals with disabilities as they engage with live music and other events really highlights the transformative power of cultural experiences which is truly rewarding!
What has been your favourite volunteering experience?
My favourite experience has to be getting the opportunity to volunteer at Truck Festival 2023 and getting to work on the viewing platforms helping to make the people with access needs feel welcome and included. It was hard work and I’m really glad I brought my wellies, but we had plenty of free time in the evenings and felt privileged to be working with such a fantastic group of people and met so many amazing festival goers on the platforms who left lasting impressions and really moving stories of how they overcame so many obstacles to end up congregated in a muddy field with their kindred spirits.