As Volunteers’ Week draws to a close, Create thanks its 612 volunteers

Nicky Goulder, Chief Executive (with camera) thinks she knows the real reason why Korantema (on the right, with a cake!) enjoys working at Create.  © Ismar Uzeirovic
Nicky Goulder, Chief Executive (with camera) thinks she knows the real reason why Korantema (on the right, with a cake!) enjoys working at Create. © Ismar Uzeirovic

A month today, it will be ten years since my vision for Create became reality and we started operating the charity from my dining room!  From the very beginning, volunteers have played a crucial role in helping us transform the lives of people who are disadvantaged and vulnerable.  The impact and importance of their contribution is unquantifiable – I cannot imagine Create without the many, many individuals who give of themselves, their skills, their commitment and their time to help us deliver our award-winning programme.

Since the beginning, we have offered graduates an opportunity to spend six-months at Create on our internship programme.  To date, 37 have taken up the challenge, developing skills and experience early in their career that have given so much to us and helped them secure jobs in, among others: teaching; The Royal Opera House education department; an advertising agency; and fundraising.

I asked Korantema Anyimadu, one of the two volunteers currently working here as Project Assistant, to give her reflections:

“Voluntary work can land you in unexpected situations, be it wading through knee-high mud at a music festival; camping outdoors in the Atlas Mountains; serving Christmas dinners at a care home or meeting athletes at the Paralympics. It’s through these experiences that I’ve learnt the most about others, their cultures, interests and inevitably, the difficulties they face. Volunteering has allowed me to see and do more, and become more aware.

Volunteering with Create has been no different. After just a few weeks, I had built a sculpture with adult carers, enjoyed a live concert with disabled children and their families and danced with a giant teddy bear! Overall, I’ve seen a lot of smiles.

It’s great to witness the enthusiasm, fun and engagement that Create’s workshops encourage and it’s these positive experiences that make being a volunteer worthwhile.”

Alongside our internship programme, we offer a range of volunteering opportunities including: participating in projects; fundraising (we have a 10 for 10 Challenge this year that might inspire you!); and offering skills that we desperately need.  The Chairman of Bonhams, for example, generously conducts auctions for us at two fundraising events each year; and a PR Consultant provides us with invaluable advice as a member of our PR Council.

Nicky Goulder, Chief Executive