Hear directly from Pedro, who volunteered with Habitat ReStore through the European Solidarity Corps programme.
The European Solidarity Corps (ESC) programme has been immensely positive for Habitat, and for the communities we serve through Habitat ReStores and our House to Home programme. Volunteers from across Europe provide hands on help for local people and the programme offers an enriching experience for the young people as well as our staff team and other local volunteers.
We asked Pedro, who volunteered in Habitat ReStore Ballymena for more than a year, to tell us about his experience.
I volunteered with Habitat ReStore for one year. I finished my studies and I was looking for something different away from academia. I came across European Solidarity Corps and later Habitat for Humanity. I was impressed with Habitat's mission and wanted to help by volunteering and starting on this adventure.
I have engineering skills which helped me PAT test and work with electrical appliances. I have great team work skill & am always willing to try anything.
My favourite task was to interact with customers and provide the best customer experience. I particularly enjoyed supporting volunteers who maybe have learning or physical difficulty as well.
I learned how to work in a team, improved my retail skills and how to interact with customers.
That the team is more like a family than co-workers. You can always find someone who can help you. You are working but you don’t feel like you are working as it is so much fun. I was also blown away by the people who support us, customers and donors.
I was on the till interacting with a family who had just moved to the area and had very little in their home. They could not afford all the items they would have liked and left a dining table and chairs behind and paid for the other items. A lady behind them in the queue purchased the dining set at £80 for them as an anonymous gift. That act of kindness blew me away.
The mission inspires me. Everyone deserves a safe place to call home.