Youth & Under 30s - Profiles

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Name: Fionnuala McKenna
Age: 22
Fionnuala McKenna
Why did you decide to volunteer?
Rather than take a gap year during my time at university I decided to gain some work experience so I volunteered in two local volunteer centres in my area.
What tasks/duties did you get to work on?
During my volunteering I got to help out on many different community projects that worked alongside both old and young people from all social backgrounds. I even had the chance to help out at some different events around the Belfast area.
How do you feel you benefitted from this?
I feel this really helped me improve a lot of my skills, such as communication and my ability to work as part of a team. It also boosted my self confidence and made me realise how much I enjoy working within the community sector. It also gave me a better understanding of how the voluntary sector and a lot of charities work.
Would you recommend volunteering to other people?
Without a doubt. Volunteering opened a lot of windows for me, coming out of university with no experience makes finding a job really hard! Never mind the economic downturn. Giving up my free time to volunteer really benefited me personally and the experience I have gained is invaluable, I would recommend it to anyone, not only does it enhance your CV but it can help you decide the career you want to embark on and it benefits the local community. My volunteering experience actually led me to full time employment shortly after I graduated from university so it was definetly a worthwile experience.