Sherene Howard-Walker

Sherene is a KCLSU Positive Peer. Positive Peers help create a flourishing community by promoting, supporting and celebrating the wellbeing of students at King’s.

 

What do you enjoy about volunteering as a Positive Peer?

I really enjoy being able to reach out to as many students as possible across all the KCL campuses and then seeing the impact we have had. It is also great that the work we do is varied week by week. Not only that, but the team that I work with are fun, supportive and great to be around!

 How did you choose this volunteering role specifically?

I am very interested in pursuing a career that understands the importance of addressing and trying to conquer the mental health issues that people experience, and I have always believed that it is key to promote the maintenance of good mental health and wellbeing on an everyday basis. So, when I saw the advertisement to become a Positive Peer in my weekly newsletter I knew that this voluntary position was something that I needed to get involved in!

What are the roles and responsibilities of a Positive Peer?

The Positive Peers do a variety of great things on a weekly basis. These include running the “Positive Minds” and “Wellbeing” workshops, holding the “Cooking and Conversation” classes at Great Dover Street Apartments and keeping students updated with upcoming events plus posting uplifting messages via social media. We also have pop-up Wellbeing stalls across all the KCL campuses and at these stalls we give students a space to relax, do some fun activities and chat with us about anything and everything. With all these fantastic things that I do as a Positive Peer, my main role is to promote the importance of looking after oneself on a mental, physical and emotional level whilst at university and to ensure that students remember to take time out between studying so that they work more effectively and productively throughout the academic year.

What’s been your favourite memory of volunteering as a Positive Peer?

Every term we run the “Positive Minds” workshop! It's a four week course that helps students find ways to maintain a positive mood whilst at university, by focusing on things that they do on an everyday basis and can try to improve, such as sleeping, eating, socialising and even exercise. There was one student who attended this workshop during the last academic year who was very engaged in all the activities. At the end of our final session they mentioned that they really enjoyed the course and said how much the sessions had helped them both physically and mentally on many different levels. Hearing how much this workshop had an impact on them, made me feel so happy to have been a part of making positive changes for this student’s life, and is a memory that I will never forget.

What have you learnt from your time volunteering?

I have learnt first-hand that volunteering is very rewarding as you have the opportunity to help others and maybe have an impact on them in such a way that it could change their life. Volunteering also allows you to meet and work with a number of great, like-minded individuals. Additionally, you can develop so many life skills from gaining the confidence to present in front of an audience to being able to effectively use social media.

What would you say to anyone thinking of taking part in volunteering?

I would definitely say to volunteer if you’re thinking about doing it! Not only would you be doing something that you enjoy and are passionate about on a regular basis, but you will learn a lot about yourself, develop as a person and meet many fantastic people along the way.

 

To find out more about the Positive Peers work click here.

To nominate a student for volunteer of the month click here.