Volunteers – in their own words

“I work with very intellectually challenged children who have Down’s syndrome, for instance, I have a challenged child of my own, so I feel that I can relate. It’s gratifying to give back to society and see a child grow and prosper.” – Gabrielle Saura, a volunteer at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital Toy Library, Rondebosch

“If you can give children a little care and discipline, it’s gratifying. The best way t serve you God is to serve people. We are a broken nation. You can sit back and watch, but you get to the point when you feel that there has to be something you can do to make a difference. However sad the situation, it’s exciting to be a part of healing our nation.” – Abeeda Kagee, St Anne’s Home

“Research has shown that three out of four women have been abused in some way. We desperately need the younger generation to follow through with the legacy of volunteering, because the need is so great.” – Disha Ishmail, Mitchell’s Plain Network Opposing Women Abuse

“I’ve been volunteering for eight years now, helping people who have lost everything due to fires. Volunteering keeps me busy and give me purpose.” – Bonita Wagner, Red Cross Society, Wynberg

“The way the world is today, if youngsters offer their time to do good there will be less crime. I didn’t work at one point, now helping others is my calling. I will volunteer until I physically can’t anymore.” – Doreen Daniel, Red Cross Society Fundraising Shop

“After retiring from teaching, I wanted to give back something to my community. We need a more caring community and we need to be prepared to serve in it.” – Faiza Andrews, Red Cross Child Development Clinic

“I spend lots of time at the centre where I volunteer. I’m involved in helping with reception duties, faxing and photocopying, and I’ve gained many skills from volunteering.” – Tonica Tantolo, Fighting Against Poverty Organization

“Being a volunteer has taught me many things I did not know before. With more training, I’ll be able to build a career from my time spent volunteering.” – Richmond Nyanagani, a monitor at the Coma Unit, Groote Schuur Hospital

“If you can relate to people, you’ll enjoy volunteering. It’s not about the money, the elderly need attention and they love to see that young people, especially, are interested. Those who are blind really appreciate someone doing their hair or reading to them.” – Beatrice Adonis, Beaconvale Frail Care for the Elderly, Mitchell’s Plain