STEPS volunteer Linda is learning and loving it
Avid gardener, reader and learner, Linda Ritchie has been volunteering at STEPS Pathways College in a supportive role for almost a year.
Linda said she loves being a part of a program that provides students with the opportunity to gain independence.
Helping students build skills, knowledge and confidence, STEPS Pathways College is a training course designed to support young people with a disability as they work towards living independently in the community.
Holding a passion for learning, Linda said she has gained new knowledge in her volunteer role and is eager to learn more.
“I enjoy learning about the strengths of each student and how I can support them to be more aware of those strengths and believe in themselves and their abilities.”
“Being here is the passion in my life at the moment,” she said.
As Linda continues to dedicate her time supporting students at STEPS Pathways College, National Volunteer Week takes place from 21-28 May, an annual celebration that recognises the meaningful work of volunteers.
At 69 years of age, Linda said age is not a barrier to volunteering at the college and encourages more people to apply for roles.
Having volunteered for most of her adult life, in a range of different areas, Linda said she knew straight away that the volunteer support role was what she wanted to do.
“As soon as I heard about STEPS Pathways College and how the program builds independence for people with a disability, I knew that’s the one.”
“It’s a great place to volunteer because of the wonderful students and the team here.”
Originally planning to volunteer half a day each week, Linda currently spends four to five days with students at STEPS Pathways College, providing support when it’s needed.
Linda said working with the college students has been a very fulfilling experience.
“It has been the best, and I love it.”