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Kate MacKenzie Interview

A photo of Kate smiling
Kate MacKenzie

Our volunteer of the month is the incredible Kate MacKenzie

Kate is a remarkable individual with a passion for helping others. She is the activities coordinator for the Companions Order of Malta charity. From the very beginning, she believed in TimeGivers and its mission. She possesses a unique ability to think outside the box, always finding creative and meaningful ways to engage children of all ages in giving back.

She has worked with us on several projects, including for the homeless and the elderly. What sets Kate apart is her unwavering commitment and the ease with which she coordinates these initiatives, making it effortless for everyone involved. She never imposes pressure, allowing the children to feel challenged and engaged while enjoying the act of giving back.

Kate's dedication to volunteering goes above and beyond, as she generously contributes her time more than twice a week. Her warm, caring, and selfless nature makes her a role model for all. Kate is always ready with a smile, always offering assistance to those around her. She even extends her support to mentoring and guiding others, as evidenced by her help in starting an Instagram feed. Kate truly shines as a star, and she is undeniably one of the most valuable friends to TimeGivers.

Interview with Kate MacKenzie

Kate MacKenzie: With the homeless, it's, a lot harder because for health and safety reasons, young children can't come to the soup kitchens. But TimeGivers have done some wonderful decorations and written poems for National Poetry Day. And the homeless, when you give them the poems, they're really touched that the school has talked about them and their situation and that the children actually want to write something.

And so often these things are decorated beautifully and they can't believe that somebody's taken so much time. So it, it, it is enormously rewarding to be on the other end actually giving them to the homeless. 

Kate Deighton: And as a charity what do you think the value of having children volunteering is?

Kate MacKenzie: I think it's enormous. I think anybody volunteering is fantastic, but I think if you start early in life, you know, it's an opportunity. You can volunteer wherever you are in the world. And so, you know, when you're a young adult, you remember when you volunteered when you were young. Or you continuously do it. And there's some children for you.

It's immensely rewarding. And I think if children do some volunteering when they're young, they realise how fun it is. And then when they're older, they have the chance to remember that they did this before. And they can do it at any age in life, between jobs, gap year, anything like that. And it is really good for self esteem, with a lot of children at the moment.

Young adults and anyone having mental health difficulties. It's something that's really helped a lot of people. 

Kate Deighton: And do you think that it'll have an impact in the future on charities or on children volunteering? Or what do you believe the impact of TimeGivers is from , your perspective?

Kate MacKenzie: Well I think TimeGivers has opened the eyes to a lot of children who will see The advantage of doing something for someone else. And I think that it's it's, it's really enjoyable doing something for someone else. And when you have something laid out like TimeGivers, that it's easy to slot into lots of their different projects.

You can have a variety of things for the environment, for the young, for the old, the disabled. And you can see the benefits of what you are doing. 

Kate Deighton: And is there a benefit to you, like, to being a charity specifically and having a service like TimeGivers? Like, for the organisation you work at, what is the benefit of TimeGivers?

Kate MacKenzie: So, the benefit for us is that well the companions, we're a charity and everyone is a volunteer. So, people only have a certain amount of time that they're able to give to volunteer projects. So. What I have done with timekeepers is sat down and talked about what we're going to be doing. And they've slotted in, we could help with this, we could help with that, we haven't got time to do it.

Actually, they've not said that very often. So it means that they've had the chance to support us in lots of things and make our projects have a nice touch to them. At the Soup Kitchen, we don't just give food, we like to give a lovely experience. And things like, you know, for the coronation or something, having it completely decorated with Union Jacks was lovely. And things like poppies for Remembrance Day, it just adds an extra touch and time givers being able to do that and bring the things that have been useful for us. Amazing.

Kate Deighton: Is there anything else you'd like to add? 

Kate MacKenzie: No, I think it's a great charity. We've worked well together and mapped out some things throughout the year. They've delivered on everything they said they would do, which is nice. Amazing. 

KateDeighton: Thank you so much. Thank you.

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