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‘I feel privileged to play a part in working toward ending violence against women’: meet Erin, our new Volunteer Coordinator

Photo of Volunteer Coordinator, Erin.

We are very excited to introduce you to Erin, our new Volunteer Coordinator. Volunteers play a central part in assisting our solicitors in the helplines and with casework, and Erin’s role is crucial to keep our volunteers engaged and to offer them the best experience possible.

To celebrate Volunteer Week, we asked Erin to tell us more about herself and her experience volunteering for us.

A bit about myself

My name is Erin and I’m starting my fourth year of a Dual Qualifying Law degree in September. I chose to study law because I wanted to pursue a career that would allow me to have a positive impact on society. My other two passions are English and Politics.

I’ve always enjoyed helping others and one of the main things that attracted me to volunteering is being able to make a difference to someone’s life, even indirectly. In fact, I’ve been a volunteer swim coach at my local swimming club since I was 16!

My experience volunteering at SWRC

I have loved volunteering for SWRC and assisting solicitors in the helplines over the past year. Even though at times it can be difficult to hear that abuse is part of so many women’s lives, it is great to know there is a centre out there which aims to help women, and it is even better to be a part of it.

Volunteering at the Centre has really opened my eyes to the meaning of gender-based violence. I now understand that this term covers so much more than physical violence: it can be financial, emotional, sexual abuse or it can cause harm in other ways. Sometimes these other forms of abuse can be overlooked.

There is a misconception that women experiencing discrimination due to their gender is a thing of the past. However, gender-based violence is still far too prevalent in Scotland and the UK, and there are gaps in women’s ability to access justice. The work that we do at SWRC is so necessary not only in helping individuals but in influencing policy. I feel privileged to play a part in working toward ending violence against women.

My advice to those thinking of volunteering…

Two words: do it.

If you have a passion for women’s rights, I would definitely recommend becoming involved with the SWRC. Volunteering here has helped me to develop both professionally and personally, all while making a difference to women’s lives. I have learned how to work with confidentiality and as part of a team. I also feel fulfilled personally, that I am doing something to support women who are vulnerable and in need of help.

Even if the SWRC is not the right place for you to volunteer, I would encourage you to find some time to volunteer for another organisation. It is important that we all do our bit to support our community.

How to become an SWRC volunteer

We recruit new student volunteers through the Strathclyde Law Clinic. Because of the pandemic, the SWRC will not be taking new volunteers for the time being. However, if you are considering volunteering for us, keep an eye on the Law Clinic’s website for updates on upcoming recruitment.

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08088 010 789

All our helplines are open as usual.

Legal information

Monday 2 - 5 pm
Tuesday 6 - 8 pm
Wednesday 11 am - 2 pm
Friday 10 am - 1 pm

Advocacy support

Tuesday 11 am - 2 pm

Sexual harassment

Thursday 5 - 8 pm