If someone asked me whether they should volunteer with Sense, I would say just do it! Volunteering on a Sense holiday helped me develop valuable additional skills I now use as a newly qualified nurse. And being able to support a person with disabilities so they could have an amazing holiday was a really rewarding experience.
When I volunteered on my fourth Sense Holiday, I was paired with a young adult called Eoghan and provided one to one support over the course of the week, alongside another volunteer.
It was great fun, we worked really well together to encourage him to take part in the various activities and socialise with the other holidaymakers.
We wanted to increase his sensory experience, so we took every opportunity to place him in different environments. He really enjoyed going for walks in his wheelchair over bumpy ground and he even held a snake when the travelling zoo came, it was very exciting for him.
To provide the support needed to give an individual an amazing holiday is fantastic and a really rewarding experience. As a volunteer on a Sense holiday, you have the opportunity to experience lots of new things, visit new places, make friends and develop new skills. For example, volunteering has helped me to develop my communication skills and increase my confidence when speaking with patients. I have also learned basic sign language, an important and valuable skill that I’ve been able to transfer into my career as a nurse.
Volunteering on a Sense holiday or short break makes you realise how challenging it can be to look after a child or adult who is deafblind, and also how important it is to give those parents a break. For that reason, I would love to go on many more holidays, not only to give the participant a holiday but to also give the people involved in their care a break too.
If someone asked me whether they should volunteer with Sense, I would say just do it! It’s always good fun and makes you feel proud for giving someone else a holiday. There may be some challenges along the way but with a supportive team and good friends around you, anything can be achieved.
Sense organise holidays and short breaks throughout the year and all around the UK for people of all ages with multi-sensory impairments and complex needs.
Visit the Sense website to find out more about how you can volunteer on a Sense holiday
Read Rebekah’s experience of volunteering on a Sense holiday.