Harmanjit’s story

I’ve always seen Big Issue Vendors dotted around my university. I’d never bothered to fully research or understand what The Big Issue Foundation was actually about until I came back from a holiday aboard to India. This was where I was exposed to the extreme difficulties and issues that homelessness causes. Realising that there was little I could actually achieve there, I came back determined to understand how I could help to make a difference – no matter how small. I came across the volunteering position on the Foundation’s website and made a decision to apply- only later would I discover how significant and important this decision would be.

Upon receiving initial training, I was given the opportunity to immediately become a part of every day life at the Foundation’s offices. The team was small and close knit which allowed me to gain an appreciation of the different roles that each member filled. Everyone was friendly and keen to share their work and wisdom with me!

Since I started volunteering at the Foundation I have increased and expanded my professional knowledge of many different aspects. I created press releases for major events like The Big Knitathon, invited local businesses to participate in the Foundation’s work as well as logging data from supporters in to Raiser’s Edge, which is a charity database. As well as these, I actively got to speak to supporters, and also to help manage social media pages like Twitter and Facebook. Whilst these experiences are important as professional skills, they have allowed me to develop on a personal level too. I have seen my confidence increase steadily, and it has allowed me to be exposed to the bigger issues that are at work in the society around us.

I would definitely recommend volunteering for The Big Issue Foundation for all the personal and professional benefits! But also because it is full of people who genuinely want to change the world around them. It’s a boost to be able to go in to the office every week and be surrounded by people who are working hard to improve the lives of vendors who always remain the focus of each and every task.

I would like to take this opportunity to offer a genuine and heart felt thank you to the whole team, their wisdom and experience has been invaluable to me. My volunteering experience at The Big Issue Foundation will always remain an important and significant part of my life. Let it become part of yours too!

If you would like to become a part of the team at The Big Issue Foundation then you might like to apply for our current vacancy for an Events Fundraising Volunteer.

Posted in Staff, Volunteers, Volunteers’ Voices.