Volunteering in the community
“I’m delighted to be able to give more.”
With her nephew needing vital heart surgery, Laura and her family wanted to raise funds for the hospital treating him.
“Everyone has their own reasons for wanting to support the work of a particular charity. My desire to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital stems from the incredible help and support they’ve given my 3-year-old nephew. He has a congenital heart condition which means he’ll need major heart reconstructive surgeries later this year and beyond.
So, myself and my family decided to embark on a walking fundraiser in March 2021. We covered over 300 miles, and through my Just Giving page, plus the Lloyds Banking Group Matched Giving initiative, raised £1,542.02 for this great cause.
When the pandemic hit, Nicola was able to help an essential community hub adapt to and survive lockdown measures.
"I was someone who was keen to support the community in one way or another through the pandemic, but didn’t quite know where to start. When the information came out internally explaining that we could be involved with helping a charity address the challenges they had been presented through the Coronavirus pandemic, I was keen to see if I could add any value.
I registered my interest and received an email with a list of Charities that needed help. I selected a charity and was sent some further information about them and their business needs, alongside an invitation to a 2 hour remote forum.
"I was excited to start a new volunteering project and after a couple days of looking through all the micro-volunteering opportunities available to us, I decided I would choose ‘Postcards of Kindness’ with Age UK.
It was quite an obvious choice for me as I’m a rather chatty person! Initially I picked the care homes I wanted to write to and then chose what I wanted to send (postcard, regular card or letter). I then picked to write to them about and away I went.
In each card I briefly put down a little information about me and I then continued to ask where they are from and/or where their favourite country is. I also chose to write about how we are adding a new addition (our puppy) to our family in August and asked if they had any ideas on what to call him, if they had any pets during their life. I also promised to attach a little photo of him in the next card/letter I send.
I sent the cards with the branch address attached as the return address so that I could share the responses with my branch. It was a rather simple task but gave me a real sense of enjoyment and I hope it did to the resident(s) that received the letter.
With more and more older people feeling so isolated at the moment especially those in care homes it is a great feeling knowing that your card/ letter arriving really brightens up their day."
"There was a great range of opportunities available but I opted for the ‘Instant Wild’ charity which help towards the conservation of endangered species.
By using the last 30 minutes of my day, I was able to register with the charity and use my time to start tagging animals in live photos – it was super easy and was a great feeling knowing I was making a difference to the charity by identifying animals caught on camera.
I've also been able to log into this site on my personal device so I can continue this at home & continue using my downtime to support Instant Wild!"
"I have recently taken part in micro-volunteering during work by using my time to support the charity ‘Instant Wild’. There were a wide variety of charities to choose from ranging from writing postcards to care homes to helping animals at risk of becoming extinct.
I chose this charity because I think wildlife organisations can often get ignored and people forget what happens to animals and their habitats due to the development of the human race.
For my activity I watched live photos and videos of African safari animals in their natural habitat, I then had to identify the different species that could be seen. This included elephants, buffalos and warthogs just to name a few. By doing this activity, I have added to the database that scientists use to help conserve and protect endangered animals from becoming extinct. It will also help them to understand threats and improve safeguarding.
I feel like even though it was such an easy task to complete it was also very enjoyable and I have contributed to helping endangered animals in the wild."
Niki has helped colleagues by running virtual Yoga sessions during lockdown in partnership with our gender diversity network, Breakthrough.
“I grew up surrounded by yoga but also meditation. My father would meditate daily and I loved sitting with him – I always felt so peaceful and connected to my thoughts and feelings so as I grew older and “life happened” I continued to explore the many aspects of yoga. For me, yoga is my way of life – it’s what I eat, drink sleep and breathe. It helps me make decisions and have a perspective to everything in life – even COVID-19!
From day one of lockdown, I had requests to run yoga and meditation classes online both through colleagues and via friends & family on social media. It demonstrated how important it was to manage our health and wellbeing during this time.
I was acutely aware of my own role in the Group and how it wasn’t impacted as much as all the key workers supporting colleagues and customers. I responded to the internal request from Breakthrough and agreed with them to host yoga sessions and make them available for all LBG colleagues. We ran the first session on the 25th March and there was a huge response!
Since lockdown I have the blessing of time so I've spent more time each day exploring my ever changing feelings and emotions from day to day. Breathing through anxiety has been especially helpful for me – we've all had to make changes to our lives to get through a time in which we all experienced worry, stress or panic in some way.
It’s important to recognise what we’re feeling and have coping strategies to help keep us calm – for me it’s closing my eyes and breathing."
Harjit Singh has been volunteering within the Glasgow area, delivering meals to preparing and delivering meals to front-line workers and vulnerable people within his community.
"Me and the lads got together and started preparing meals at the community kitchen at the Central Gurdwara, Singh Sabha on Berkely Street, Glasgow. We have been preparing pizza, pasta, rice and curry. I’ve not been cooking, just delivering the food portions.
We have delivered to NHS staff in Hospitals across the Greater Glasgow and Clyde health board, Scottish Fire Service, Scottish Ambulance Service, Homeless Shelters, Police Scotland and care homes to say thank you to staff working in these organisation for everything they are doing during the pandemic.
Liz Huby in the Stockbroking Insurance & Wealth team at Lloyds Banking Group, has been helping the elderly in Leeds through the coronavirus lockdown.
"I’ve been volunteering now for a local charity in Leeds called OPAL (Older People’s Action in the Locality) for over 7 years now. They provide various support services to elderly people in our local area. I am a volunteer befriender which involves visiting someone who is lonely or isolated and providing them with company.
I currently visit an 86 year old gentleman called Trevor who lives about 5 minutes away from me, obviously since lockdown we’ve had to change from regular face to face visits to me telephoning him instead. I’ve been visiting him for over 2 years now and we’ve forged a really nice friendship.
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