Volunteering gave me the confidence to get back to studying

Posted on April 13, 2016

From isolated drop-out to getting her studies back on track and full of hope for the future.

“I suffer from anxiety, depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.” Saskia told us,  “it makes it hard for me to interact with people. I frequently have panic attacks, back out of social situations and have refused to answer the door or phone. To top it all off, I have to cope with dyspraxia too.

I was taking a break from uni and decided to volunteer as a way to gain work experience but also work on my confidence. I chose a general office role as I wasn’t comfortable doing something customer facing. It was a small office, which made it easier for me. I was challenged without being overwhelmed and for once felt like I was paddling along happily rather than being thrown into the deep end.

Volunteering gave me something to pop on my CV and I definitely had more success applying for things. Psychologically it was very powerful for me: I discovered my efforts were appreciated and had value. I had a great deal more self-esteem and confidence afterwards.

I’m back at uni now, and have a part-time job alongside my role as president of the Arts and Crafts Society. I would absolutely recommend people to volunteer; we all want extra support from time-to-time.”