Eleanor is 25 years old, lives in Parkhead and enjoys football, netball and watching Partick Thistle play. She wanted to volunteer in Glasgow and came to us. She enjoys getting involved in whatever’s going on around the centre and engaging in a bit of the banter with members, volunteers and staff at Possobilities.
Eleanor joined us through Enable Scotland’s Employability Fund in September 2015 to do a work experience placement – four days per week for eight weeks – and immediately got stuck in preparing meals, delivering food across Glasgow through our Cook ‘n’ Care scheme and even cleaning up in the kitchen.
Fast forward one year and Eleanor is still with us having chosen to stay on as a Possobilities volunteer and works with us five days per week. On top of her role in the kitchen, she now volunteers at our evening social clubs too!
She has grown in confidence throughout her time with us, supporting the kitchen, escorting bus runs, encouraging members to socialise and bringing new ideas to the table and is now a valued part of the team here at Possobilities. Eleanor’s the first person you hear when you enter the building and always leaves you with a smile on your face on the way out. She’s also a qualified first-aider too, something which she will always proudly remind you of should you ever cut your finger.
Eleanor is an example and a role model to many of our members and proves that no matter what your background or obstacles in life are, with hard work you can achieve whichever goals you set yourself. Thanks, Eleanor!
If Eleanor’s story has inspired you to volunteer at Possobilities then get in touch using the form below or read on to find out more about our incredible team and service users!
Eddie is another of our supported volunteers who has been attending sessions at Possobilities from an early age. He has recently become an invaluable member of the voluntary team, assisting our drivers with pick-ups and drop-offs and providing a point of contact for members from the moment they first get on the bus to come to the centre, to the moment they get dropped off at night.
Eddie’s enthusiasm for the centre is infectious and his positivity and can-do attitude is a credit to him and those who have supported him and helped him come out of his shell. He was recently selected by BBC Children In Need to form the focus of a short film about his journey which was aired during the Scottish broadcast in November.
Volunteering is very important to me. I get job satisfaction, social interaction and it opens your eyes to the different situations in which people live. Volunteering at the centre really helped me to get my life back on track after tragic events in my personal life. It has given me a reason to get up and about, interacting with other people. My commitment to volunteering and taking on numerous tasks and activities in the centre has led to me taking a part time position and joining the fantastic team of staff at Possobilities and Cook ‘n’ Care.
It means a lot to me to be a volunteer as it enables me to get out and about and meet different people. It has allowed me to become friends with volunteers, staff and has given me contact with our varied and diverse service users.
I like meeting people and working with the public and the staff at the centre. I also enjoy meeting our service users while I am out delivering meals for Cook ‘n’ Care. Volunteering gives me the opportunity to achieve this and also offers me the opportunity to be more confident and increase my independence.
N is 11 years old. He has been accessing Possobilities for just over two years now. N started the sessions as a quiet young person that found it difficult to socialise with young people his own age and always found it difficult to express his feelings. Two year later and N is seen as the leader of his peer group. The young people ask him for advice and look to him for guidance when playing new games or trying something different.
We spoke to N’s mum recently and she expressed an interest in what N did while at the club. Our response was that N walks around with a parachute on as a cape, building secret dens with the soft play equipment, supports the young people in playing games and always has a smile on his face. She thought we were talking about the wrong child. This is the only place she says that N is able to express himself comfortably without feeling insecure. N has been able to progress onto the teenagers’ session smoothly and is thriving with young people of a similar age.
A is 16 years old. He has been accessing Possobilities for 8 years. When A first started he was addicted to his computer games and didn’t really socialise with other young people. Possobilities was the first social club he had ever been to.
A had suggested starting with a timetable of how he would spend his time at the club – in an attempt to come off the computers. 8 years later and A does not go on the computers at all. He is so full of confidence and ensures everyone is comfortable at the club. A particularly enjoys supporting one of young people that is non-verbal; he would like to become a volunteer at Possobilities. Since starting Possobilities, A has accessed additional social groups – particularly gymnastics. A has taken his gymnastics further and was a representative for the disabled community of Glasgow at this year’s Special Olympics. He has given our other members the confidence to get involved with sports and try different new activities.
Paul has been attending possobilities for over 10 years, and has a complex learning disability. With the help from everyone at the centre Paul has been able to lead a meaningful and enjoyable life. Paul has progressed so much over the years, starting out as a member attending our evening social club, Paul quickly became friends with everyone and with encouragement from our support workers Paul was becoming more confident in himself and his surroundings.
When the time was right Paul was offered the opportunity to become a supported volunteer. He was thrilled at this idea and with the approval from his parents began volunteering for Cook ‘n’ Care. Paul now attends four of our social clubs (Try Something New, Diversity, Cooking Class and Evolution) and volunteers with Cook ‘n’ Care three days a week, delivering meals in our community.
Although Paul was thriving at his social clubs and voluntary work he still needed to work on his life skills. Paul was very uncomfortable using a sharp knife during cooking activities and became anxious if he was asked to use one. We began using a butter knife, teaching Paul the proper method to slice/cut, and once he was beginning to overcome his fear, with patience and the proper environment we knew we would get him using a sharp knife one day. Once we felt Paul was ready to cut food using a sharp knife we allowed him to do so. This was great achievement for Paul and he still brags about it to this day, to witness Paul taking part in a cooking activity now it is amazing to watch him use his newfound skills.
Paul is proud of himself and we are very honoured to be part of Paul’s achievements.
Service User’s Mother
I know when my daughter is at Possobilities she is safe and people care about her, as I am getting older I worry about who will be there for my daughter when I’m not, and I know you will all be there for her.
Almost 3 years ago James arrived at Possobilities with his key social worker. James came to us was because he was “bored” and had nowhere to go and nothing to do, now he is never bored as his days are filled morning, noon and night 5 days a week!
James was first interested in volunteering, James was really quiet during his interview so was advised to become a member and join one of our social clubs first then we can progress onto volunteering. On his first night attending the social groups he offered to put the chairs away at the end of the session and quickly became everyone’s helper – offering to brush the floors, take out bins etc. A few weeks later Cook ‘n’ Care was short of volunteers and James stepped in and saved the day, and since then James has been scheduled in for Cook ‘n’ Care every morning Monday to Friday.
James is one of our most reliable volunteers and is always available to help. He is an inspiration, and proves that in the right environment, he can commit to a full time job. His social worker is grateful for the opportunity given to James and regularly sends service users to Possobilities who require our guidance and support. Watching his journey and his transformation has been incredible.