Ana Mendes – Youth Club Volunteer

‘It makes me really happy to see the children having so much fun and not on screens’

How long have you been volunteering with Coin Street and how did you find out about us?

I have been a volunteer since January 2016. I’m in the first year of my  A-Levels and the teachers at my school suggested volunteering as a good way of making the most of some of my free time. I did an online search for volunteering in London and Coin Street came up.

How did Coin Street compare to other organisations?

I like the fact that the activities for children at Coin Street are free.

Tell us a little bit about what you do at Youth Club

I volunteer every Wednesday and there are a range of activities we run with the young people. We are each given a session plan beforehand and we try to adapt our sessions to what the young people would like to do, within reason.

Has the experience been rewarding for you?

I have been really surprised, I hadn’t expected to  make so many new friends; some are slightly older than me so it has been interesting. It also makes me really happy to see the children having so much fun, and not on screens! They do all sorts of traditional activities like cooking, craft, ping-pong and so on – it’s nice to see them laughing and engaged without the need for technology.

Would you encourage others to help out in their local community?

I would really recommend volunteering as a way to try to discover more about yourself, or just to step out of your comfort zone.

For more information on Coin Street’s Youth Club click here.