Fran Smith – Petrus Hub breakfast volunteer.

Fran Smith – Petrus Hub breakfast volunteer.

9605f0ebe2ebcd44dd990255a7e5ee6c

“At the end of 2014, I was put onto JSA after 20years of being a stay at home mum. My jobcentre advisor suggested I look at volunteering as a way to ease myself into the job market and referred me to CVS in Rochdale. I looked at several opportunities and decided I would like to do something in catering. CVS put me in touch with Petrus Hub who had opportunities for breakfast volunteers.

I was contacted by Liz who arranged for me to visit the project and to discuss what I would like to get involved in. I was really nervous and apprehensive as I hadn’t worked for such a long time. Liz put me at ease and made me feel welcome. we then arranged for me to do a taster session so I could decide if volunteering for Petrus suited me. I was worried that I would struggle with the routine and whether I could do the job.

I did my taster session and felt much better once I had met other staff and volunteers. They helped put my mind at ease and showed me how to carry out certain tasks. I decided that I did want to stay on as a volunteer.

I have been volunteering for 5 months now and I enjoy it so much. I do 2hours every Monday to Friday.Every day is different and I really feel part of a team. I feel like I am doing something useful and I know that the staff appreciate what I do. I have learnt a lot along the way and I think I am more patient and have a better understanding of the difficulties some people face. I like meeting the new characters that come in to breakfast. I feel like my confidence has had a boost too. I am doing a typing course in Manchester and will be starting an IT course in September. I am looking for a job and feel ready for work. I do hope that I can carry on volunteering as long as I can!”