Volunteer Week: Elaine’s Story
We want to say thank you to all our volunteers for enormous contribution they make and their help in supporting people living with dementia across Scotland.
The support we provide to people living with dementia, their family and their carers, is delivered not only by our colleagues, but also by an army of over 900 dedicated volunteers. Our volunteers give up their time to help with everything from fundraising to befriending, music and art activities to driving a minibus, raising awareness in their local area and working on our freephone Dementia Helpline.
To mark Volunteers’ Week, we want to showcase our incredible volunteers and highlight the great work they do.
Elaine Smith is an Admin Volunteer in Dumfries Dementia Resource Centre and has shared her motivation for becoming a volunteer and why she chose Alzheimer Scotland:
“Before volunteering I worked as a health care assistant in a dementia unit, and that’s where my interest in dementia began. Unfortunately, in 2015, I unexpectedly became unwell and had to undergo neurosurgery. I worked hard in rehab for eighteen months to be able to get fit enough to return to work, but sadly, it wasn't to be. I was told at an occupational health assessment that I wouldn't be fit to return to my work. That is when I decided that I would work towards getting myself fit enough to be able to offer my services within a volunteering capacity.
“I chose Alzheimer Scotland because I wanted to remain involved in a dementia-related environment and having previously undertaken training from Alzheimer Scotland, I knew a little about the charity.
“My current role within the admin office gives me something to look forward to going to, even though it is just once a week. I also feel like I am, again, contributing to society. I felt that my previous job played a large part in my identity and although it is a different role that I hold now, I feel happy that I am involved in dementia-related role.
Elaine encourages anyone to sign up to become a volunteer, she says: “I would say to anyone thinking of volunteering to definitely do it, they will get so much out of it, there is the social aspect of volunteering, you feel a sense of inclusion. That feeling that you are contributing to society and helping others goes a long way to help with your mental health if you find yourself unable to work like myself. However much time you can give will be a help and gratefully appreciated.”
We are always looking volunteers in all areas of our services to make sure nobody faces dementia alone. If Elaine has inspired you, check out our latest volunteering opportunities.