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Volunteer Story: Aiman

Aiman left her home in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia three years ago to study business at the University of Essex. Aiman told us that at first she found it daunting to be studying overseas, but she soon wanted to push herself out of her comfort zone and help out in the local community. That’s when she found out about HARP and decided to volunteer.

She told us: “I came to HARP because I’ve seen a lot of homeless people around Southend High Street. I started wondering why they were there and what had happened to them. It was really sad to see them being in the cold at winter time. So, that’s why I thought I’d help.”

Aiman has been doing a fantastic job in the kitchen at our Bradbury Day Centre, where she has been helping to prepare and serve nutritious breakfasts and lunches to local homeless people for 18 months now. Whilst providing a service that is essential to helping local people overcome homelessness for good, Aiman has also seen her time here as an opportunity to learn new skills.

“I have learned a lot about life skills here, seeing the service users and how they face their challenges. Learning how to manage and provide food to people, whilst also communicating with all the volunteers, staff and service users. Volunteering has also helped me in terms of my CV and employability skills.”

Aiman is soon heading back home, where she will catch up with her family, whilst deciding what she wants to do next. We wish her the best of luck for the future. She has been a fantastic volunteer for us and has made a huge difference to the lives of homeless people in Southend. We’d like to say a massive thank you to Aiman and all of our amazing volunteers throughout the service.

Reflecting on her time at HARP, Aiman told us: “HARP are great. The staff are really helpful and friendly. It’s so nice to see this side of people.”

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