Andrew Sinister is the second volunteer nominated by manager Anne McLauchlan and shortlisted by Third Sector, Dumfries and Galloway. Andrew serves as volunteer and service user representative on the Board of Trustees and is also the Health and Safety officer for the charity. His role on the Board gives him insight into how the organisation is run and he supports the Trustees to be service user lead.
Andrew was himself a service user of Kate’s Kitchen who was initially referred to the charity by a partner organisation. He felt socially isolated and had an extreme lack of self confidence and panicked at the thought of attending sessions at an organisation like Kate’s Kitchen. Andrew also suffered from anxiety and struggled to communicate. This gentle giant is still not one to talk much, but when he does, it is with wisdom and authority and people listen because they know what he is saying is meaningful. He is more aware of his value and has gone from only being able to volunteer for short periods at a time to being an active volunteer who has run the kitchen and prepared the meals during the cook’s absence. He is a valuable part of the board of trustees and a great member of the team.
“Andrew has grown and developed in many ways but his confidence levels are the greatest significant development. He recently completed both a Fire Risk and a Health and Safety Assessment of our new building, ‘The Beacon’, on Bank Street in Annan. Both were huge pieces of work and reflected his growth and development since coming to the charity. His contribution is extremely valuable and he is greatly revered by both his peers and the other trustees. His volunteering means that those who are disadvantaged lead the agenda at the charity as he not only brings a personal perspective, but also represents the voice of the service users.
We are really proud of their achievements and wish both John and Andrew the very best and hope they win the awards they have both been nominated for. Well done, John and Andrew!
The Volunteer Awards Ceremony will take place on Thursday 2nd June, 2016 at The Usual Place in Dumfries as part of Volunteers’ Week. This is an annual event organised by Third Sector, Dumfries and Galloway, and recognises volunteers and volunteering within the region.