Interview: how are young volunteers are making good things happen in Sincil Bank?

by Luke Wallace

I caught up with Cole, who’s been volunteering at our Sincil Bank club (amoungst other things) for the last few months, and helped us double our attendance in the past 5 weeks by bringing a lot of humour and enthusiasm.

Cole is 16 years old, just finished school and also a very good goalkeeper!

Q: When did you hear about Energize and what was the first thing you did with us?

A: Probably around 2013, I was walking down the street where I live in St Giles, and saw you guys at the youth centre. I was only 9 but you let me join in anyway [the club was technically for 11+ but we’re generous!]. I remember playing games and multisports and going on a trip to jump inc that week. It was really good! Me and my mates were pushing each other and just had a really good time.

We have some holiday schemes coming up! Our program will go live on 14th July, so don’t forget to check out our events calendar where you can sign up!

Q: How did coming to Energize make you feel?

A: Made me feel happy, helped me make friends, have fun. I was a bit bored in holidays so I always looked forward to Energize coming up to the Gillies.

Q; What difference did coming to Energize make to you?

A: It gave me lots more stuff to do, and helped me get out a bit more. I’d probably just have sat on my xbox otherwise.

Q: What made you want to start volunteering with Energize?

A: When I saw you and Lauren, you were really happy and I thought that it’d make me happy too! I’ve been really enjoying it.

Q: What kind of things do you do as a volunteer?

A: I go into schools to help with the Engage Course. This is a six week course that helps young people think about relevant things- we did abotu cyber bullying today. At youth clubs I help set up, sort equipment, sign people in. I’ve just learned to handle money too. Tonight was the England game so we watched that- come on!!

Q: What kind of impact do you want to have through your mentoring?

A: To make others laugh and feel happy. I want to give people a positive mindset. I always really enjoyed Energize at St Giles and I want other young people to have a similar experience to me.

If you need help, whether it’s with finances, food, mental health or just a place to feel happy, you can always get in touch with us via our Get Help page.

Q: How is volunteering helping you?

A: It’s making me look forward to doing something. It’s also taught me to communicate with other people better and I feel more confident. It’ll also be good for later on when I start apply for jobs.

Q: What do you see yourself doing in 5 years time?

A: I’d like to go to uni and be a teacher. That’s an ambition I’ve had for the last 3 years. There are a few teachers I’ve been inspired by at school, particularly my English teacher Ms Andrew, who helped me a lot in year 9.

Q: What’s been your best highlight of volunteering so far?

A: Eating pizza and ENGLAND WINNING tonight!

Fancy getting involved in volunteering just like Cole? Check our our How You Can Help page for more info about volunteering opportunities.

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