#VolunteersWeek: Interview with Jonathan Williams

#VolunteersWeek: Interview with Jonathan Williams

 Wed, May 31, 2017

In celebration of Volunteers' Week starting tomorrow, we've had the pleasure of interviewing a few of our volunteers over the past week. We will be sharing their interviews in the coming days. 

First up, we have the lovely, Jonathan Williams: 

1. Why do you volunteer at Castlehaven?

I'm a keen gardener but don't have much of a garden - a few square feet of soil, though, I do have potted plants. Castlehaven is a big space to work in, with potential for big projects. After years working indoors I greatly appreciate working in the open air with others who want to maintain Castlehaven and see it thrive. I've always enjoyed walking through the greenery of the Open Space, volunteering is an opportunity to give something back. London has its big parks but it also needs the smaller spaces, like Castlehaven - a small oasis in an increasingly built-up area. I'm glad to be a part of a great team.

2. How does volunteering benefit you?

Volunteering helps me because after years of working indoors, I now greatly appreciate working in the open air with others who want to maintain Castlehaven and see it thrive. There's a great sense of collective satisfaction in seeing the area clear of litter, the grass mown, the plants and trees maintained, and new plants added. Castlehaven has a great team of volunteers, and full-timers, and I've made new friends. I've also picked up useful gardening tips and my knowledge of horticulture has expanded. I really feel a pride in the place.

3. What's the single best thing about volunteering?

The single best thing about volunteering, apart from the friendship and cooperation, is the satisfaction of seeing the open space looking well-kept.

4. What has Castlehaven given back to you?

Castlehaven has given me friendship, the chance to work out of doors with a collective sense of purpose and an increased knowledge of gardening. It's a very rewarding experience - in all weathers and seasons!

5. Have you improved your skillset in any way?

I've most definitely improved my skillset. We have 2 professional gardeners, let alone knowledgeable volunteers! I've learnt about new plants and trees, and their maintenance, and with the upcoming classes in the Hub I'll be learning a lot more!      

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