The World Is Standing Strong With Orlando

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Image courtesy of Becris at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

With the shocking events that took place over the weekend I have been wondering are we really doing enough to tackle homophobic discrimination? Many people from the LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender) community face discrimination on a daily basis and I feel this is because it is easier to discriminate against minorities.

 

The events that took place in Orlando at the weekend have shaken the whole LGBT community and I personally know a few people who have said that they are having trouble trying to comprehend why this took place. It is my hope that the people who tragically lost their lives, it has not been in vain and we as a society can turn around and say ‘No, we will not discriminate against minorities anymore’ Everyone regardless of race, religion sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or whatever disability they may have; each and every one of us has the same right to live and work.

 

While I understand that in America the second amendment states that it is every Americans right to bear arms, I do sit and wonder if that is something that should be allowed especially in this day and age. It seems that gun crime is on a rise and younger people seem to be able to get their hands on a gun and play with it. For me, I think guns should only be allowed in the hands of the armed forces or in gun ranges not something that every one has in their house.

 

I don’t understand why some people are still in the dark ages with issues like disability  gender identity, sexual orientation and race. Things have changed a lot so why is it that there are people and companies so reluctant to change.

 

I really do hope that this tragic event marks the turning point and we start to treat people as equals and not as second class citizens. Please don’t let this be for nothing and we can pave the way for those who come after us.

 

 

Reflecting On Volunteers’ Week

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Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

 

As Volunteers’ Week once again has come and gone It has got me thinking how important volunteering is for people and for many organisations who host these volunteers. As a volunteer I have found the experience of volunteering invaluable. I have gained new skills and even improved other skills that I already had. I have even found I have been able to improve aspects of myself which before I volunteered were lacking. Bearing the above in mind; I would encourage anyone that suffers from mental health issues or has been unemployed for an extended period to give voluntary work a try. You might find that you are more interested in a certain sector of work that you had previously dismissed without a thought or you might even find that new opportunities open up for you.

 

I know that there are people who have the point of view that voluntary work is a dead end and can’t possibly help you further your working career. While I’ll admit I do know of people who have been looking for work and volunteering for a long time and yet still have had no luck in finding work. I do feel that it’s not the fact they are volunteering which has prevented them from finding paid employment but that it is due to a combination of other factors. Such as there was a person better for the position that they applied for or another person might have been more flexible with working hours than the person who is volunteering.

 

I feel that volunteering helps in that it gives an individual a great opportunity for personal development but it can also open some new doors that might have been out of reach previously.

Personally, I volunteer for St John Ambulance. I also suffer from depression amongst other issues. Since starting to volunteer in October there have been massive improvements in my life. At my induction, I was very nervous in all situations and I panicked whenever I was in a situation where I had to talk to people. Even after my induction period was completed I was still finding that I had issues that I thought I had got over years before I even thought of volunteering with St John. Some of these issues, such as physical contact with others due to a former abusive relationship I was in. Since I discovered that this was still an issue I was supported as much as possible by some of my unit and other people that came into my life. This has helped me to in the main move on from this issue. I have also found that I am now much more confident in general and that I can keep a conversation going with people that I have never met before.

So for me volunteering has been very, very important in my development as a person.