Chelmsford Community Volunteer of the Month: Carla Straw

 

Name: Carla Straw

Course: 2nd Year Policing and Criminal Justice

Volunteer Role: Welcome Buddy, IntoUniversity Mentor, Children in Care Council board member

 

"I love making people happy. I think no matter what I am doing, as long as I can make somewhat of a difference to someone, even if it’s just a smile, then I've accomplished everything I want to do"

 

 

What are your main duties and how do they benefit others?

This year I was a welcome buddy to some first year's in my course and I am so proud of how far they have come. Two of them are even friends now. I also volunteer for IntoUniversity where I mentor young people and help/ support them in their education. Additionally I am on the CICC (Children in Care Council) board in Thurrock, where I help represent children in care and to try and make the system a little bit better.

 

What have you enjoyed most about volunteering?

I love making people happy. I think no matter what I am doing, as long as I can make somewhat of a difference to someone, even if its just a smile, then I've accomplished everything I want to do. I also think that I've had some bad experiences in life and the voluntary roles that I am currently doing give me the opportunity to try and not let that happen to anyone else, and to offer the support that I wish I had when I was going through a similar situation.

 

What skills have you learnt and used during your volunteering?

Confidence mainly. In the CICC we have professionals come in and talk about their ideas and thoughts on the best way to improve the system. Sometimes I have to stand up and call them out on things, or speak about my own personal experience to give evidence to why said things wont help or work.

 

What inspires you to volunteer?

To help people. I want to make a difference no matter how big or small.

 

What is your favourite volunteering memory?

In my mentoring for IntoUniversity, I brought in some beads and other materials to make bracelets with, and it was a really nice session and they really enjoyed being creative.

 

What are your future career aspirations?

To be honest, I'm not quite sure what I want to do yet, but I know I want to help people. Volunteering with a range of different people will really help me in whatever career I would like to get in the future.

 

Why do you love volunteering?

It gives me the opportunity to meet other people and get a broader perspective on life, and I would highly recommend volunteering to others.

 

Are you inspired to start volunteering?

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