Volunteers’ Week: Emma Buckett – Ataxia

Volunteers’ Week: Emma Buckett

Volunteers’ Week: Emma Buckett

One of our brilliant volunteers, Emma, writes about her experience with Ataxia UK.

My name is Emma and I am 41 years old. I have Friedriech’s ataxia and was diagnosed at a very young age. I currently volunteer as a Friends Connect Befriender with Ataxia UK. Photo of Emma

I have been a member of Ataxia UK since the ‘80’s, but I have been volunteering with them for less than a year. 

Due to my ataxia and the many difficulties that come with having that disability, I found myself unable to continue with paid employment about 10 years ago. I started taking volunteer roles because even though I’m physically disabled, my brain is still capable of working. 

Ataxia UK is my fourth official voluntary role. My first two were admin based and then for four years I was trustee for another charity, including a social community for disabled people. I am no longer a trustee, but I still do voluntary work for them. 

Volunteering for Ataxia UK was a simple process. I filled in some forms and had a zoom conversation with the appropriate staff members. I was then given some online training to complete. I was initially quite nervous about the prospect of online training as this is not something I have done before However I found it very interesting and a good basis to begin volunteering. 

Because I am relatively new to volunteering with Ataxia UK, I’m not an expert. What I have had is positive and I feel supported in my role. 

For me, volunteering is giving my time, not only to help others, it also gives me purpose and an ability to use the things that I am able to do in a positive way. 

I would definitely recommend volunteering to others because not only does it look good on your CV but it also gives you a sense of purpose and enables you to gain confidence. 

Fancy volunteering with Ataxia UK? Check out our volunteering opportunities here. We’d love to hear from you!

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