Volunteer voices: Kirsty’s brain tumour story
“Giving someone your time and a listening ear is a selfless act”
The Brain Charity’s phone befriending team is a group of volunteers dedicated to reducing loneliness among those with neurological conditions.
Our befrienders strike up relaxed conversations over the phone about any topic, giving space to those who feel they need someone to talk to.
Kirsty is a valued member of The Brain Charity’s befriending team. Volunteering remotely, she joined in May 2022, applying for the role from her hospital bed at The Walton Centre after receiving brain surgery to remove a tumour.
“This role is so rewarding, knowing you can walk alongside a service user during their journey with a neurological condition. There is nothing more valuable than having lived experience.
“Granted, we may not have the same condition, but I get to be authentic, which has allowed me to gain a deeper connection and become more empathetic with the people I befriend.”
Kirsty not only finds it a rewarding experience, but one that has supported her in her own recovery journey.
“Giving someone your time and a listening ear is a selfless act and in a way, it has become a form of therapy for me, by being able to give back to others. It makes my week when I have a good chat and catch up with the ladies who I support.
“I have volunteered for the last few years in different organisations after losing my leg. My initial aim was to support amputees, but the joy, knowledge and confidence I got from the experiences with a range of different demographics has motivated me to pursue a career in counselling/mentoring which I am currently studying towards.”