When I turned 30 it was at a point in my life where I wanted to do something to give back to the community. It took a couple of years to find what I wanted to do but I found it.
I saw an advert for a charity trek for the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance Trust, it was to climb 3 volcanoes in Italy. This was something I have never done before and I don’t think I would have the chance to do it again.
I went along to an information evening where I heard all about the trek and what the charity does, and I felt it was the right charity for me so signed up there and then.
After the trek I didn’t want to walk away from the EHAAT as I enjoyed my time helping and supporting them so I signed up to become a volunteer and I haven’t looked back since.
I have been a volunteer for EHAAT for 5 years now and I still enjoy it to this day. What else are you going to do on a Sunday apart from get up at 6 am and stand in a rainy field on a sponsored dog walk, who doesn’t enjoy wet dog cuddles?
I have volunteered at all sorts of different events, from Bucket Collecting, cheque presentation evenings where I have given talks, community events at schools and carnivals, being the mascot Pilot Pete but my favourite would have to be the Charity events. Strictly Air Ambulance and The Motor Cycle run being the top two.
I have been lucky enough to take part in both events, and the highlight was dancing the waltz and jive in front of 2000 family, friends and other supporters. To be told my dance was the most graceful of the evening was a moment I will cherish for ever. The cuddle from James Jordan after the show was also worth it too.
I also got to ride pillion on a Goldwing during the Motor Cycle Run, again an amazing experience. Being part of 2000 bikers all riding out together to support a worthwhile charity. I had the biggest grin on my face for the whole journey.
I think they would be my best moments but I have had the chance to be part of so many more: meeting air lifted patients; meeting Olly Murs, Ray Winston and a number of Strictly Stars; being Pilot Pete and sitting on a police bike; waving off 3000 bikers on the start of the last Motor Cycle Run,; trekking in Cambodia; cup collecting at V festival; encouraging and marshalling at Cycle rides and marathons; and finally to record an advert for Heart Radio to encourage others to become a volunteer.
Why would you not want to? Look at all the things you can do!
To view current volunteering vacancies with Essex and Herts. Air Ambulance please click on the links below: