Anna Robinson, from Liverpool, has been working with charity Safe Families since 2019, undergoing training along with her parents to become a host family offering short periods of respite in cases where children cannot stay at home.
Through the charity, Anna and her parents were matched to provide support for a three-year-old child initially, as well as personally volunteering to support four other families on a short-term basis.
Currently studying medicine at Edge Hill University, Anna says her volunteer work has been a fulfilling experience and provided her with new valuable skills along the way.
“These families are amazing, and I’ve learnt so much from them. I believe that no one should feel alone and offering consistent and compassionate support really does help families to thrive.
“Empowerment is so important, and it’s been incredible to watch the growth of these families.
“As a medical student I understand the importance of patient centred care. My involvement with Safe Families has had a positive impact on local people and helped me develop skills vital to be a compassionate doctor.
“My lecturers at Edge Hill have inspired me to make a difference to vulnerable communities.”Anna Robinson
Edge Hill students can fit their volunteer work around studies and other commitments.
Students can also apply to the Student Opportunity Fund to help with costs for some volunteering activities, covering travel and accommodation costs required to undertake unpaid work experience or volunteering opportunities for up to a maximum of 30 days.
“The more I have been involved with Safe Families, the more I have seen the benefit and the more passionate I have become about their work. I am so fortunate to have grown up in a supportive family and I want to be able to offer this care to other people.
“Through volunteering with Safe Families, I have gained greater empathy and understanding of how people’s life experiences influence their future health and wellbeing. I have improved my communication skills and learnt how to engage during challenging scenarios.
“Volunteering has helped me to see the value in continuity of relationship and I hope to take this forward into my future career. It has also sparked an interest in possibly pursuing community paediatrics as a training pathway.”
Volunteering can be flexible allowing you to give your time around studies and other commitments, whether that be a few hours per month or a few days per week.Anna Robinson
To find out more about volunteering, go to: https://ehu.ac.uk/volunteers.
June 1, 2023