Our volunteering stories

CAF staff go beyond to help charities make a difference

The CAF World Giving Index measures the average percentage of people in each country who donate money, volunteer or help a stranger. In light of our findings our staff came forward to share their volunteering experience, highlighting the great work done for charity without parting with money. From running community projects to being apart of large media campaigns, here are some inspirational stories from our staff:

Natasha EdwardsName: Natasha Edwards
Cause: Prevention of poaching of elephant and rhino horns
What I did: In 2014, I volunteered for two weeks in Mpumalanga, South Africa at a rehabilitation centre Khulula Care for Wild. Most of the animals were rescued as orphans of poached mothers. I was able to interact with different animals and learnt about nutrition. I was also given the chance to get involved with vet checks and I carried out anti-poaching techniques.

Sarah HampshireName: Sarah Hampshire
Cause: parkrun (community event)
What I did: I began running at parkrun in 2015 and was instantly struck by the friendly, community nature of the event which made me decide to volunteer and become part of the team.  Volunteering roles range from marshalling, taking photographs, timing, handing out finish tokens, supporting the finish tunnel, scanning bar-codes, results processing and pre-and-post event set-up. Parkrun inspires people to stay healthy through running but also to become part of an active and vibrant community.

Patsy Dixon
Name: Patsy Dixon
CauseThe Heart of Kent Hospice
What I did: 
I’ve supported the Hospice since I moved to Kent 20 years ago; and the amazing work they do is  why I spend any opportunity I can to help this deserving Charity. Since working at CAF I have championed their cause.  I have had the privilege of volunteering for this Charity in many diverse ways including; repainting benches for the Hospice gardens, working in the office to increase distribution of collection tins in business locations and raising funds at a women’s fundraising event.

Shelter from the StormNameChris Gibson
CauseShelter from the Storm
What I did: I volunteer for a homeless shelter based near Kings Cross, it’s a completely free emergency night shelter providing bed, dinner and breakfast for up to 44 homeless people every night of the year. I’ve volunteered for over a year now, mostly doing the washing, chopping veg for dinner, washing up and playing pool with the guests!  I’ve also done some fundraising for them, running the St Albans half marathon in 2015 and raising £540. As it costs SFTS £10 per guest per day to provide a warm bed, breakfast, a hot evening meal, showers and a wide range of other services, the £540 raised allowed them to run that service for one guest for 54 days.

: Jo-Anne Ostermeyer
Cause: Breast Cancer Now
What I did: I was selected by the Breast Cancer Now and Marks and Spencer, as I'm a breast cancer survivor, to feature in a lingerie campaign for breast cancer awareness month in October 2015. The lingerie range was designed by Rosie Huntingdon-Whiteley and the photographer was Amanda de Cadenet. Media gurus calculated that the total number of occurrences through online hits, readership of many national papers and some glossy mags (Hello etc) in the month of October was 18 billion.  

Amy Clark v2

Name: Amy Clarke
Cause: The Blue Cross
What I did: I am a trustee for the UK’s oldest and largest animal rescue charity. The Blue Cross. Twelve years ago I rescued a Staffie Cross ex stray who had been abused and ended up in a Blue Cross rescue centre in Oxfordshire. 10 years later I met the then Chair and a conversation ensued about me joining the Board. I feel incredibly blessed to have been given the opportunity to volunteer for this great organisation doing superb work. 

Rachel Egan
: Rachel Egan
Cause: Cardiff Mental Wealth Society
What I did: I ran Cardiff Mental Wealth Society; a student wellbeing group which aimed to promote positive mental health on campus. We ran 14 wellbeing events include ‘Release Your Inner Child Day’ which is a post-exams celebration for students where we hired out the Students Union for a huge party, featuring a bouncy castle, sumo wrestling suits, lego towers, face paints, finger painting and art walls. I still volunteer for Mental Health First Aid England today and I am an e-mentor for teenagers. 

James KnightName: James Knight
Cause: Maidstone Invicta Rowing Club
What I did: I have been an active rower since I was 15 years old. I realised about four years ago that there was a gap in the coaching of the junior ladies at my club. Maidstone Invicta Rowing Club. Ever since then I have devoted considerable time to working with my fellow coaches and the club to develop girls’ rowing. The girls’ coaching is matched to what they want to achieve whether racing in local events or attempting to win National titles. My reward is seeing their enjoyment of the sport and hopefully their smiles when they perform well.

Name: Emma Winfield
Cause: Girlguiding UK
What I did: I was a Brownie from the age of 7 and my mum was a Brown Owl, and I've never left the organisation. I've been an adult leader for eighteen years now - giving girls the same opportunities that I was given as a child growing up.

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CAF World Giving Index 2015

CAF World Giving Index provides a simple picture of charitable behaviour across the world.

Download and read the report

Benefits of volunteering

Volunteering can benefit you - as well as the charities you support.

Find out the benefits of volunteering