This Volunteers Week we are recognising the incredible volunteers who help us in so many ways – from supporting students in sessions, to juicing up fruit for our market stall Fruitful, to sharing skills, expertise, advice and guidance.
As a small charity it’s vital that we work well with local businesses and we’ve been developing what we can offer to corporate organisations over the past few years. We’d like to say a special thank you to the people who have given their time and energy to us over the last year, including volunteers from
Proximity London, Sage, PwC, Heathrow Express, Pimco, Sage and Squire Partners.
Volunteering is win-win – PiP is able to tap into a resource of knowledge and skills, provide varied and exciting opportunities for our students and benefit from the energy of volunteers to complete a project. In return we are able to offer a range of opportunities and outcomes to meet CSR objectives, a chance for personal development, the opportunity to learn new skills, and to contribute to the lives of people with learning disabilities and autism.
One example is the Heathrow Express Volunteer Day in January 2018 when a team of 9 Heathrow Express employees, including the CEO and Head of Customer Service, spent the day at PiP.
In the morning they supported our juice stall Fruitful to prepare for a market the following day. The team got stuck into all tasks from transporting the ingredients from a local fruit and veg supplier to peeling oranges and slicing apples. By the end of the morning we had prepared gallons of juice to sell the next day. To top it off, they paid for all the ingredients and the transport to and from the venue, meaning every drink sold was profit.
Later on in the afternoon the volunteers took part in a Makaton (sign language) class where our students taught them terms frequently used on trains such as where to find the toilet, the name of the next stop, and of course “I’m sorry we are late”! Throughout the day PiP staff provided advice and information about disability, dispelling myths and fears, highlighting the talents and achievements of our students, and providing insight into our method of support and development.
The feedback from the volunteers was overwhelmingly positive with many saying that they learned a lot about disabilities and themselves as people and that they would put this into practice both at work and at home.
“A fun and insightful day”
“Clear and concise understanding of objectives and charity purpose”
“A fantastic opportunity to understand how important this charity is and what it means to the students”
You can speak to Danielle to find out more about volunteering with PiP on firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 8960 4004