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Volunteer Case Study: Robert's Story

Robert explains what it means for him to be a volunteer visitor for Turn2us.

                      Photo of Robert        

Robert has been one of our visitors for the last ten years, having first seen the role promoted by the charity Reach.

Robert currently visits 17 individuals for Turn2us. He also volunteers for Help Musicians UK and for a local hospital where he carries out patient satisfaction surveys. Robert’s enjoyment of his volunteering comes from his ability to communicate, empathise and understand. This allows Robert to write excellent visit reports for the Caseworker, painting a clear picture of the people he visits.

No two visits are the same

In Robert’s experience, no two visits are the same and it is important to be able to understand and to report in writing what the existing circumstances of the individual receiving a grant are. He says: “This will provide an insight and paint a picture to the Caseworker and enable appropriate and focused assistance."

Robert finds most individuals receiving grants are welcoming, chatty and interested in knowing what is going on with the organisation.

Taking the time

During his visits, Robert takes time to talk, question but most importantly listen and show compassion and understanding of the situation. Preparation before the visit is important, including recalling any issues that were highlighted during the previous visit, how the person managed them and, in many cases, were able to move on from them. Robert comments, “It is a case of finding the balance between being objective and also being in a position to see what and how support can be given”.

He talks about the personal circumstances of two of the current individuals he visits:

Individual A is someone who has developed a life limiting illness and when he visits, he can see at first hand the toll that it is taking on his partner.  However, they are always most welcoming, chatty and have a positive approach towards trying to cope. 

Individual B has a debilitating medical condition which can make leading a normal life a great struggle. However, he is always really appreciative of the help he receives from Turn2us, commenting that he feels that there are others who are probably worse of than himself.