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Kathryn Evans previously volunteered for Adviza and mentored teenagers who had left education and were looking for work. She absolutely loved volunteer mentoring and seeing the joy and improvements it bought to young people that she wanted to continue doing so as a fulltime job. Kathryn is now an Energise Adviser at Adviza. Read her full story here:

Becoming a volunteer gave me the opportunity to help others out with careers; this was an area I particularly struggled with when it came to applying for full time work. It also offered me a great chance to motivate young people, share my personal stories and share how I overcame difficulties whilst consistently passing on my hope and encouragement.

It’s so important that young people know that they have both value and worth and can offer so much to an employer – it’s just giving them the boost to help them get there. It’s also vital that they get help in finding a career that’s perfect for them as an individual, so they can thrive and stay in employment.

Volunteering also improved my own skills and capabilities, I learnt to build upon my own leadership and management qualities, it also allowed me to network and build up communication with companies in the local area, thus increasing my confidence. It’s so rewarding and fun watching an individual grow and develop knowing your efforts have contributed to that!

After being a volunteer mentor I then decided I wanted to feel the joy and achievement fulltime, everyday. I am now an Energise Adviser and I work with younger teenagers aged 14-15 who are lacking motivation, have low confidence or need behaviour help. This is a new territory for me after working with 18-24 year olds.

From being both a volunteer and an adviser for young people I have many success stories; here’s one that particularly made me smile; I spent a year working with a young person, I helped her to get signed up onto a customer service course and then write her CV and apply for jobs. She eventually found a great role in a local store where she could begin to build up her skills. Recently, I wrote a reference for her for a second job role, so she’s moving up to the next step in her career –what a privilege!

Geoff Meynell previously volunteered for Adviza and mentored young people who were not in education, employment or training. He loved supporting these young people and wanted to spend more of his time making a difference to their lives. Geoff is now an Energise Job Coach at Adviza. Read his full story here:

I guess I’ve always had a leaning toward volunteering in both my working and personal lives. I became involved, as most people do, through my children’s lifestyles and interests. Taking my children around swimming lessons, judo classes, guiding and scouts (to name but a few of the various activities they were involved in, with my wife and I providing a very First Class taxi service!), I soon became involved in “helping-out” the different organisations, with occasional tasks. This very quickly evolved into full-blown volunteering on a full-time basis. I would definitely say that volunteering starts with the Family!

Throughout my working life I’ve been involved with supporting organisations with particular emphasis on Youth initiatives (Prince’s Trust, Young Offenders, Circles UK, Cricket and Judo Clubs, to name a few), and recently, I’d been fortunate enough to work with ADVIZA as a Volunteer Mentor.

Volunteering has given me a lot of satisfaction, as well as widened my experience in areas I would never have considered previously. It has provided me with new organisational skills and fund raising experiences. It has also been quite humbling at times, particularly when supporting organisations that work with disadvantaged children. Working as a Volunteer Mentor provided me with some memorable stories and results, especially when Young People engage with me and suddenly open up to the possibilities that are available to them, through understanding their own positive strengths and characteristics.

I would definitely recommend volunteering, particularly in the Youth field. It’s not necessarily for everyone, but it can be very rewarding and certainly provides another interesting facet to our focused lives. 


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