Opening doors to volunteering

Posted on the 5th April 2018

I’m a communications and content volunteer here at Scope and I write the Scope volunteer newsletter. Throughout my life, I’ve had a passion for human rights and wanted to work in the charity sector. I’ve also had rheumatoid arthritis from childhood so it never felt like a career path that was open to me; but I’m disabled, so I’ve developed open, flexible and creative problem-solving skills in abundance.

I’m proud to support and invest time volunteering with an organisation that works to create a better, more equal society.

Disability and employment

Scope’s research has found that ‘a million disabled people can and want to work but are unemployed.’ The social model of disability states that what limits disabled people is the way society is organised. This model is liberating. Remove those barriers and everyone benefits. Digital technology enables me to push open doors that were previously closed.

I’m disabled. Sometimes you can see this, sometimes not. It has affected my employment opportunities, but not my determination to pursue my career choices. I have just graduated, studying remotely, with a first-class honours degree in international development and organisational strategy from the Open University.

Volunteering has been my route to building the necessary digital skills and experience to take the next step in my career. I’m a member of Charity Comms, to keep myself at the forefront of training and best practice in the charity communications sector. Alicia, my wonderful Charity Comms mentor and all round digital expert, has encouraged me to realise my career aspirations every step of the way, again all remotely.

The world of work is far more accessible thanks to digital technology and I’m able to pursue the career I’ve always wanted.

Volunteering with Scope

I contacted Scope’s Support to Work service for disabled jobseekers to ask advice about employers who are open and flexible to different ways of working. Digital technology has incredible potential to remove barriers if organisations are ready to embrace and release that potential.

I’ve volunteered with lots of national and international charities over the last three years to build my digital communications skills. I decided it was time to broaden my human rights experience by volunteering with Scope as a copywriter.

It’s an exciting time to be part of the team. Scope is launching its new brand and weaving digital technology into every aspect of the organisation. I’m getting to be a part of that launch. I’m passionate about the power of digital to reach new audiences and deeply engage with them.

My role adds real value to the organisation. The solid volunteer support structure and training have provided me with content management system and website accessibility training, which I’ve put into practice. I’m using my digital communications skills to create engaging content to inspire Scope’s volunteers.

I’ve learned so much about inclusion, website accessibility and harnessing the creative power of digital to drive forward Scope’s vision of a country where disabled people have the same opportunities as everybody else.

Scope doesn’t just drive change across society, it practises what it preaches. I’ve been supported at every stage in volunteering remotely. I would highly recommend Scope to those thinking of volunteering. I really feel like a valued member of the team.

Anne Curran

Communication and Content Volunteer

Anne has been Communication and Content Volunteer at Scope since February 2018.

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