At Stryder, our volunteers are not just volunteers but like part of the family. Kathryn has been volunteering with us for over 6 years, making her a much-treasured part of the Stryder community. Let’s have a chat with her:
Describe your volunteer role here at Stryder
“I am one of the ‘behind the scenes’ volunteers, as I am not a bus assistant that goes out on social or shopping trips to assist clients. I work in the office focusing on computer work and answering telephones so although I am not well known to all of the clients, but all the staff know me”.
What would a typical day at Stryder look like?
“It is spent taking phone calls from clients who want to book transport for a future date or can be currently out but ready for pickup for their trip home. In between calls I spend time setting up records for new clients on the computer.
Each day in the office can be different based on what jobs are required and how busy we are providing transport or taking bookings. There are days when the monthly newsletters or social programs need to be collated and enveloped ready to mail to clients. Never a dull moment!”.
What do you look for in an organisation when you volunteer?
“When I retired, I wasn’t ready to ‘hang up my boots’ to concentrate on my crafts at home but was looking for an organisation that was flexible about the time that I spent volunteering and where I could continue to use the experience that I had gained over many years of office work. Working in a team environment was also important to maintain social contact.
What attracted you to Stryder?
“A couple of weeks before I retired, I met Virginia Coy, the CEO at a parkrun and as we talked, Virginia explained about Stryder and how community transport makes an impact to those who are transport disadvantaged. It sounded like the type of organisation I had in mind, and they were looking for volunteers. Perfect timing!
I was able to work the flexible hours that I wanted in a friendly team environment and got to use my brain and office skills. On top of that the social contact that I have with staff, I got to talk to clients to make their bookings. I started volunteering just over 6 years ago, time flies when one is having fun!”.
What type of commitment is required?
“I work one day a week in the office. Normally Thursdays. Stryder is flexible about which day I work if I need to change because of medical appointments. They are also flexible with the number of hours that I work.
What gives you the greatest satisfaction?
“I myself don’t drive and know the stress that this can cause when public transport is not an option. My greatest satisfaction is knowing that I have helped people get around to their various appointments / social outings without having to worry as they know that Team Stryder will be there for them!”.
Would you recommend to any of your friends and family?
“Definitely! It is an organisation providing a very worthwhile service. For a volunteer, Stryder is very flexible in hours and work that you do. They are very appreciative of the help that you provide by volunteering”.
If you may be interested in volunteering, and like what Kathyrn had to say, check out the volunteer roles Volunteers – Stryder Community Transport Centre