Volunteer Experiences

To help people understand whats involved and what people get out of volunteering at Assert, we have asked some of our volunteers to describe their own experiences. 

Quotes from some current and previous volunteers:

Quote from a Lois Downes June 2020: Volunteer Buddy- who has helped people stay connected while social distancing and remote working have been required.

“I have really enjoyed being a part of the buddy scheme – I thought it was such a great way to volunteer during the pandemic! I know how much Assert’s members appreciate the monthly drop-in sessions/activities/walks so I can’t imagine how tough it is without them. I love chatting with members at drop-in so this was a great way to keep that conversation going. I think I enjoyed the buddy scheme because I felt it was helpful for my buddy to chat with someone once a week; it was good to check in with her and find out what she’d been up to and support her in the ways we usually would at drop-in”



Volunteering with Assert has been a fantastic and eye-opening experience for me. As a volunteer I immediately felt welcome by everyone at the organisation, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed taking part in all of the activities on offer, and understanding more about how ASC can impact people’s lives.

I love the monthly walks that assert runs every month, they are in a different location each time so you’ll always be walking somewhere new, and it’s also a good chance to talk to members on more of a one to one basis.”



My experience as a mentor with Assert is being truly rewarding and enriching. For me being a mentor is all about LISTENING and being there for someone, trying to make a positive impact in their life. I have built up confidence in my own helping skills. Now I understand better what HELP means: Listening, being able to create a trustworthy relationship, focus on mentee strengths and guide them to find their own solutions. I strongly recommend it to others.” –



‘’Volunteering with Assert I was instantly made comfortable and welcome by staff and members. There is always a date for my calendar with a wide range of fun activities at suitable times, enabling me to fit it in with work and university. I’m glad I chose to volunteer with Assert and have the opportunity witness all of the great things they do.’’


‘’I have volunteered with Assert since October 2014 and although it is a short space of time I have already learnt so much. In this time I have been to drop in sessions and life skill classes where we were teaching the service users how to cook. I think the life skills lessons are so much fun and very informative as they are simple tasks which benefits all. The best thing about volunteering at Assert is that they everyone is so welcoming and even though I have only been here for a short time I feel like part of the team. ‘’

Mentoring with Assert. A mentor and mentee share their experiences.

Hayley (Mentor)

“Assert runs a mentoring/befriending service.Volunteer mentors work 1:1 with Assert members, meeting regularly, usually over a period of 6 months. The mentor can offer many kinds of support such as having a chat at a café, going for a walk, assistance using public transport, researching job opportunities, or many other possibilities. Stephen Bylett and I are coming to the end of the befriending process after several months. I have hugely enjoyed being Stephen’s mentor.

Stephen Bylett and Rusty

Stephen (mentee) reflected on his experience: “I would recommend it [mentoring] because it’s good. To have someone to be with, to chat to, to have discussions with. Someone to run through things with. Someone to encourage you. We always go for a cup of tea, to a cafe somewhere, and we chat about what’s been going on, what activities I’ve done, et cetera. I talk about things that are on my mind, and holidays et cetera. I find it very encouraging. I’ve enjoyed my mentoring very much.”

Assert are always interested in hearing from potential volunteers. If you want to get involved, please email debbiet@assertbh.org.uk.


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