After being approached by a number of potential helpers, AFF set up an inclusive volunteer programme which has proven to be a roaring success. A&Y spoke to Volunteer Manager Rachel Fallows to find out what it’s like to be involved…
SINCE its creation last year, AFF’s volunteer scheme has attracted 60 people who have given up their time in roles covering publicity, foreign and commonwealth issues, events and more.
Our volunteers allow AFF to reach people face-to-face, working at the grassroots of the community. One volunteer can be the voice of many Army families.
“Many of those who have been helped by AFF are often keen to give something back. We’ve received interest from around the world – from Germany to Canada.”
Included in that number are Jo Gordon and Julie Noller, who serve as local publicity volunteers in Wiltshire.
Speaking at a coffee morning in Wilton, Julie said: “It takes confidence to be a volunteer – being able to say ‘hi’.
“I like to know what’s going on and the only way to do that is to get out there and get involved!”
Julie has had to move six times over the past 18 years and explained that being a volunteer has been a great way to meet new people.
“I like to know I’m putting something back into the community,” she continued.
“As a military wife who has moved around, it also fills my employment gaps as well as providing me with some adult company. It’s nice to be a link in the chain.”
Jo encouraged others to step up and be part of AFF as volunteering provides a raft of personal and community benefits.
“As a local volunteer attending coffee mornings, it’s nice to have somewhere to go,” she said. “It can make a real difference to someone.”
For more information, visit the volunteer website at volunteer.aff.org.uk