The National Lottery Community Fund Blog

BIG is running a campaign to encourage volunteering to beat the winter blues and help others. In this blog, BIG Scotland chair Maureen McGinn explains how volunteering, even in a small way, can be hugely rewarding.

“Mary was the person who showed me that volunteering wasn’t just about giving. I worked in an office with a vibrant community centre nearby. I lived outside the area so used lunchtimes to volunteer as a befriender in the centre’s dementia project.

After training, I was introduced to Mary, who didn’t have dementia but, lived alone with no close family or friends, and who was isolated and almost housebound.

After my first visit to her home, I shot back to the office for a sandwich before restarting work. For the second visit, Mary had made me a sandwich for my lunch and, by the third visit, she’d visited the local shops to get us a sausage roll and…

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