HITS is operated by volunteers who are dedicated to helping those who are less fortunate and in need within our area. The charity and its volunteers are highly regarded within the statutory and charity sectors for their dedication and professionalism.
We are very grateful for the support of so many wonderful people, but there is always room for more! The HITS team would love to hear from you if you would like to get involved in our work. Please contact us for volunteer opportunities.
Volunteer induction and training
Volunteering at HITS is a great way not only to get involved in local charity work and helping other local people out, but also to gain a good insight into the struggles that others face on a daily basis.
Volunteering is very flexible. HITS does not demand a set time commitment or type of role, and are happy for volunteers to help out when they can and however they can.
All volunteers are given training in handling queries and requests for assistance by clients, and are made aware of the HITS structure, ethos, and policies and procedures.
New volunteers will work closely with other volunteers as they learn about the day-to-day practicalities of working in the foodbank and how to deal with the various problems that people come to us with.
We also offer external training for our volunteers. Recent examples include training and qualifications in Food Safety, Health & Safety, PAT testing, and working with vulnerable groups.
There are many benefits of volunteering…
Julie Bakewell, one of HITS volunteers, derives enormous gratification from being part of a team, which addresses fundamental needs. It’s also an opportunity for her to meet up with others: “It’s very good for one’s own emotional well-being.” And being out of the house more means that she has become more efficient at home!
Alistair Macintosh, then of Exeter Community Initiatives, gave a talk at TEDxExeter 2012 about volunteering. He said that volunteers are a vital part of charities’ work. We volunteer for many reasons: we might have experienced illness or need ourselves, or we want to give something back, or we act from a faith or humanist motivation. Alistair suggested two even better reasons. Volunteering is about a reciprocal relationship, that gives back to us at least as much as we give to those we support: a new skill; recognition of our need to be needed; improved health and mental well-being; reduced isolation; a connection with others’ vulnerability and our common humanity. It also connects us with our local community, sustaining a healthy neighbourhood and society, creating the warp and weft of existence.
And if you needed any further persuading…
- “Research has shown that people who volunteer often live longer. The studies indicate that focusing our attention on someone else, takes our mind off of our own problems. We stay healthier and thereby live longer.” — Allen Klein
- “The secret of being happy is doing things for other people.” — Dick Gregory