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Thread: i want to volunteer, should i?

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2014

    i want to volunteer, should i?

    Life has stabilised a little for me. Im doing ok on my new meds. i have a few good days a week. I want to possibly offer some voluntary work at the local food bank or street kitchen, or local animal sanctuary. Just an hour or so, nothing pressurised or commited.
    Im scared to mention it though. Its just a thouht right now. Some days i wonder what im thinking, then other days i really want to have some reason to leave my flat, meet people and perhaps even make some friends.

    im so worried though that if i start looking into this the esa will penalise me. I know im allowed to do some voluntary work but last time i had a medical assessment and i mentioned being interested in permitted work or volunteering, i failed the assessment and had to appeal. I do believe from what was written that my showing interest in permitted work and voluteering was twisted by the assessor.
    i mean i really am only talking an hour or two a week.
    I wanted to ask advice about college courses too.

    Im in esa care group and in reciept of pip EDL and SM.
    i was awarded pip until oct 2018. I really want to use this time to look at rebuilding my life, but part of my stable state now is the financial safety net i have. Im no longet livig in poverty and all my bills are paid. It has lifted a lit of stress from me. I am really frightened of saying i want to do some volutary work, but at he same time its part of rebuilding my life.
    Does anyone have experience of volunteering?
    Do you think id be putting myself at risk by going down this path?

  2. #2
    Hi Sandy, I'm unable to answer your question, so won't try! Just wanted to say it's lovely to read that you're doing OK and even thinking about this! Take care

  3. #3

    There is always a certain amount of risk, the question is... are you willing to take it. There shouldn't be but in reality there is, i always look at it quite simply, can what i am doing be used against me in a future assessment etc.

    They make these rules and pitfalls and you have to decide if you want to play their game and take a risk or be aware of what they are actually trying to do or may do with this development.

    so my question is..

    Do you want to play a game?

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Volunteering is good for mental and emotional well being. And it is that VOLUNTEERING, so if you can find someone who is happy with as and when, then go for it! They cannot penalise you for it. Gentlegiant....thats a bit harsh. you gonna sit around and do squat cuz then folks might think you have a life??
    We do what we can. We struggle with a lot, but there is value in TRYING, to your own self-esteem if nothing else.

  5. #5
    I replied but it has since been removed

    My original post I said I used to do voluntary work once a week for literally an hour or less. It was rewarding, I then went on to say I only stopped as the place moved away.

    Good luck.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Lighttouch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    It really annoys me when I see posts like this because sandy should be able to do voluntary work.

    Sandy please look into a college course as it should be free for you.

    Meeting people and doing things is what life is about. You're only here once, this is not a dress rehearsal!

    Socialising is good for your moral and well being. Now summer is on the way try to find some volunteering outdoors to get fresh air and sunshine.

  7. #7
    Just wanted to add - I volunteer and I am in the support group.

    The key is to find something you are interested in and want to do. The joy of volunteering is that you the volunteer dictate how much you can do and how much time you spend volunteering.

    Yes, where I volunteer they do rely on all the volunteers, but there is not the pressure to turn up if I am ill, or having a bad day physically. If I can't go in, I'm not in danger of losing my job.

  8. #8
    Senior Member deebee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    My partner is in the support group and he currently volanteers two mornings a week in a charity shop
    He enjoys doing so very much and always rings me after to say " I think I did a good job today"

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Lighttouch View Post
    It really annoys me when I see posts like this because sandy should be able to do voluntary work.
    yes they should however the reality can be very different, just because i don't volunteer doesn't mean i don't do squat either.

    Questions can always be asked at a later date, ie:

    So Mr/Mrs/Miss x
    When you were volunteering how many hours aday was this.?
    How long in the time you was there was you able to stand?
    I suppose you interacted with customers well and served some?
    So i'm also assuming you managed your own toilet needs in this time ok?

    All i'm saying is this, if your not prepared to loose what you have, remember to think ahead and ponder what 'may' become of you volunteering. PIP is harder to come by due to how the points are awarded. So looking at your own points that were awarded for mobility etc how/will this contradict my volunteering and possibly standing for over an hour at a time.

    Remember think ahead, as for looking for a collage course i would be very wary that also can be used against you at a later date, as with this poster here

    I mentioned I am at University however this was used against me in the decision reasoning. I can understand how this can be used against you but the fact that me and my mother said I had continuous support from the disability support at University, note takers, meeting with a one to one disability tutor weekly, meeting my tutors to go over what was said and so on was not considered. But I am able to go to University, they assumed I can do certain activities... I knew she would not understand my disability at all from the word get go. She was not capable or suitable to conduct this assessment.

    Look again at how the points are awarded and look how going to college, and sitting/travelling and verbly communicating, managing your toliet and nurishment needs throughout the day could possibly contradict your claim.
    Last edited by Gentlegiant; 04-19-2015 at 01:14 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Lighttouch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    I can't say whether you'd be entitled to PIP or not. However, remember PIP isn't means tested because the Government would prefer that disabled people worked and PIP helped with the extra cost of buying/leasing a car to get to work.

    Once in work if you needed extra support you could contact Access to Work.

    I had DLA while working and nobody ever questioned whether I received it, how far I walked or anything mainly as I had a job of work to do and that's what counted.

    I'm a trustee of one disability group and a member of another. They encourage disabled people to volunteer so it helps people to get a flavour of real work.

    I can't see how officials will even know you're doing voluntary work unless you tell them.

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