Shafaz has been volunteering for SOAR for almost four years. She came to us via the Health Trainer programme when she attended a twelve week healthy eating course.
After making many positive changes in her lifestyle, she went on to complete the Introduction to Community Development
and Health course. With her newly found confidence and self-esteem, Shafaz became a SOAR practice champion, volunteering for the chronic pain and women-only support groups.
Shafaz is now a volunteer at the new Springboard Café at ACT and PACA, and even recruits new volunteers. She is training to be a sport coach so that she can deliver badminton and tennis classes.
“One of the main reasons I wanted to volunteer at the women’s support group is that I felt there wasn’t much support for me when I had my breakdown. Reaching out to other people with similar experiences is highly rewarding to me. The most rewarding aspect is to see the change in the women who attend the group – they have new confidence, going from reserved, scared or isolated to being more sociable, confident and independent. Some of the attendees moving on to education, volunteering, and even full time work.
“I have developed in many ways through volunteering at SOAR. I started off as a reserved and nervous person and was very reluctant to trust anyone. I was isolated for many years and stayed in the four walls of my home. By volunteering with SOAR I have realised how strong and valuable a woman I am. My confidence has grown so much I now volunteer four days a week. It gives me great pleasure meeting new people and being able to
help make someone’s life a little better.
“I would highly recommend volunteering at SOAR, as I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for them. A big thank you to Somshun for her support and helping me develop every step of the way.”