A new year is a great time to try new things. If you’re passionate about human rights, want to make a difference and care about the treatment of refugees and asylum seekers, why not try volunteering with Refugee Action?
Here’s Miriam’s story. She helped out at our head office this summer. What could you do in 2013?
I’d heard a great deal about Refugee Action, but I had no idea of the scale of its work. I didn’t know about the number of employees and offices, nor about the extensive commitment of the case workers and the huge number of clients they see every day. Volunteering at head office showed me how much work goes on behind the scenes to help people seeking safety. And I learn a lot about how this work changes people’s lives.
Volunteering at Refugee Action was my first experience of what goes on inside such an extensive charity. The prospect of working in an office, completing the odd administrative task, was daunting! But from the first day, I felt valued and useful. Those six weeks gave me a keen insight into the workings of such a large organisation, giving me a peek into future opportunities.
Most of my time as a volunteer was spent with the Fundraising and Communications team, helping to inspire Refugee Action’s supporters and keep them informed. I helped with some early planning for World Food Night 2013. It’s an exciting event that could raise more than £20,000 – potentially funding groundbreaking new work with refugees in the UK. I also helped Refugee Action’s Partnerships Officer, Gemma. She’s looking at new ways for businesses to support refugees and make their neighbourhoods nicer places for everyone.
My six weeks at Refugee Action was a great way to end my gap year of working, travelling and volunteering. As I headed off to university I was eager to continue to help in such a rewarding way. I’m hoping to volunteer with a local refugee charity and I’ll definitely be holding my very own World Food Night! If you’re interested in refugee issues and you’ve got a few hours a week to spare, you should definitely think about volunteering in 2013.
And finally – a very Happy New Year from everyone at Refugee Action!