VOLUNTEER Customer Service Officer (CSO) Laura Harper admits she didn’t know the full extent of work carried out by YMCA Humber with young people in the area, before she began her stint at the Peaks Lane Housing Project in Grimsby.
Laura, 28, from Louth, was studying a degree in Criminology at Grimsby Institute when she approached YMCA about volunteering, taking up a role as a CSO at the Grimsby-based project.
She said: “I was studying for my degree and needed to find out more about the work with vulnerable young people in the North East Lincolnshire region.
“That brought me to YMCA, where I took on the role of Volunteer Customer Service Officer, which I have been doing for around nine months now.”
And Laura spoke of how the Customer Service Officer role is an important one for the organisation in its support of young people.
She continued: “I would say that you would describe the CSO role as the go-between for young people and our support team.
“We provide not only administrative duties but also support the young people in their day-to-day lives.”
Laura also feels the role and her time at YMCA Humber so far have helped her learn so much more about the work of the youth charity with young people.
“Before I came to YMCA I thought that it just provided accommodation for young people but they do so much more, not just inside the housing projects but outside as well,” she said.
“The level of support in helping young people with everything from the job centre to moving into their own accommodation, as well as the daily support mechanisms is really first class.”
After nearly a year volunteering for YMCA Humber, Laura is hopeful of transitioning into a support role and eventually taking up a career in the sector.
She said: “I am looking to join the relief support worker pool and take in some hours in the Accommodation department.
“The support aspect of the CSO role is something I have enjoyed during my volunteering and it is something I would like to explore further.
“I have had a lot of fulfilment from volunteering with YMCA, it feels like you are really contributing to the community, and I would like to take up a career in this sector because I really enjoy helping people.”
If you are interesting in volunteering like Laura, please visit our Careers page for information on our volunteering roles or call Funding & Volunteering Coordinator Alan Burley on 01472 608 303 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.