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Duke of Edinburgh Bronze level volunteering suggestions anyone?

(24 Posts)
Northernsoul58 Thu 06-Nov-14 15:03:23

DS is 14 and moved up to Explorer Scouts where he is encouraged to work toward the Bronze DofE award. He's got Physical (Martial Arts) and Skills (piano) covered but can't think of anything to volunteer for.
He spends a most of his time at home behind screens but is very gregarious in a shy kind of way. He doesn't want to work with elderly or disabled or sick people, and he can't see himself in a charity shop.
Any suggestions?

mrspink27 Thu 06-Nov-14 15:13:32

Local conservation group? Local hospital shop/cafe? Reading for newspaper or the blind? Helping out at Beavers/Cubs? Local sports team for children?

sheilafisher Thu 06-Nov-14 15:17:18

DD is volunteering at the athletics clubs she's a member of, doing warm ups, and sessions with the youngest members. Has your DS thought of asking if he can do similar at Martial Arts? Some of DDs friends are doing similar at swimming, or are helping with a regular river clean up.

captainmummy Thu 06-Nov-14 15:17:53

My ds3 volunteers in the local Oxfam bookshop (as did ds1 when he did DoE).
But if he doesn't want to work with elderly, disabled or sick, or in a charity shop, is he doing the right thing ? The whle point of DoE is to give back to the community, whilst enriching your own life too.

inspi1 Thu 06-Nov-14 15:26:40

Have you checked with his school? There may be some opportunities there, like helping junior students with homework, reading etc.

TobyLerone Thu 06-Nov-14 15:27:55

DS is doing volunteering for his DofE at the local skate shop/youth drop-in centre. He likes it because he sits inside and drinks tea and does a bit of tidying up for a couple of hours, then goes skateboarding in the adjacent skate park for the rest of the day.

Sinkingfeeling Thu 06-Nov-14 15:28:13

captainmummy - surely there are lots of ways of 'giving back to the community' without being involved with the elderly, disabled or sick, or working in a charity shop? I do three different voluntary roles and none of them involve working with those groups. As a Cubs leader whose Cubs love it when we have DoE volunteers, that's what I would suggest - but other DoE volunteers where I live help to serve in the community cafe, work in the library, distribute the village magazine, etc.

TobyLerone Thu 06-Nov-14 15:29:58

I'm pretty sure that for most teenagers the point of doing DofE is to have a laugh doing some camping with your mates.

ToniWol Thu 06-Nov-14 15:33:58

I agree with a pp - if he's in Explorers then if he became a young leader with Beavers/Cubs should count (going on the face that girls doing DofE through Guiding can use their YL for that).

tywysogesgymraeg Thu 06-Nov-14 15:35:39

My DD volunteered in the local library.

Or failing that, take a look on-line. There's bound to be a site listing volunteering opportunities local to you.

sheilafisher Thu 06-Nov-14 15:37:56

Just remembered, some of them are also volunteering their time to provide "marketing" for the school drama club. Also, as PP, helping at homework club. They really don't need to do much.

ShatnersBassoon Thu 06-Nov-14 15:40:09

The Beavers or Cubs are likely to want help setting up and packing away, running games, helping take in subs etc. It would be easy to organise and would be something I'm guessing he has experience of.

grunty Thu 06-Nov-14 15:41:32

Library, homework club?

Northernsoul58 Thu 06-Nov-14 15:46:20

Thanks for all the suggestions. As ds loves reading it is a good idea to try the library since all the cuts mean there's hardly any paid staff left or reading for the blind. Conservation work is something I hadn't thought of. He used to attend a Wildlife Watch group for kids, so may like to go as a helper now he's older.
His not wanting to work with elderly, sick, disabled etc is not because of lack of empathy but probably too much of it. It makes it emotionally overwhelming for him. But he's happy to get involved with younger kids so school may be a good place to ask if he could mentor younger kids with reading.

Timeandtune Thu 06-Nov-14 15:48:38

Northernsoul58 Thu 06-Nov-14 15:51:12

Brilliant suggestion Timeandtune. Thanks.

ChillySundays Thu 06-Nov-14 17:15:48

Helping at the martial arts club?

TeenAndTween Thu 06-Nov-14 19:25:22

primary school after school club?

Oxfam bookshop (as opposed to a general charity shop)

myotherusernameisbetter Thu 06-Nov-14 20:21:33

I know I am going to use elderly here but not in a "caring" role - would he be able to use his computer skills to maybe help an elderly neighbour or people in sheltered housing access the internet? He could maybe link in with the library and run a weekly club for "older" people to come along and be taught to be silver surfers? Things like comparison sites for their energy bills or how to research things for their hobbies or supermarket shop etc would be good.

He would need to get one of the participants or the library staff to sign him off.

Or maybe the food bank might need help to sort donations?

It doesn't have to be something organised through a charity or official organisation as long as there is someone appropriate who could sign it off.

Leeds2 Sun 09-Nov-14 16:47:51

My DD volunteered at a local animal sanctuary.

BackforGood Mon 10-Nov-14 00:26:20

Sorry, have I missed an answer to the suggestion that he volunteers as a Young Leader with one of the Younger Scout Sections ? Seems a good way of giving something back, and is easily arrangeable if he's doing his DofE through Explorers.
That's what both of my two have done.

Kellymn Sun 23-Nov-14 16:53:44

As someone who works in the National Trust, the National Trust/ English Heritage sites are great places to volunteer as you get a wide range of experience and they have a volunteer rewards like the free NT pass.Also the obvious charity shops and animal sanctuaries. Become a Scout Leader? This is something my friend's son finds highly enjoyable. I also think the British Heart Foundation actually do a DofE volunteer scheme which is on their website, though I think its best if you just enquire at your local shop.

Kellymn Sun 23-Nov-14 16:55:29

Also look on your local council website as they will have local volunteer placements/schemes alongside the jobs.

circular Sun 23-Nov-14 21:51:55

DD1 did hers with the local music service, assisting instrument teaching in the clubs for the junior school age groups. Still volunteering there 2 years later.

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