Working at Funkibator: a weekly tour of my life as a volunteer
Hi, I’m Sarah and I’m back!
I’m here to talk about another aspect of my daily life: my work as a volunteer.
I’m working with Funkibator, it’s an NGO that provides different services: an online shop where they sell books from their publishing company and also helping aids, they also sell it in person. Besides this activity, they also rent wheelchairs and bikes for people with disabilities. I’m here with Frieda, another ESC volunteer from Germany. My and Frieda’s main role is to help with the activity of the NGO and learn more about disabilities and inclusive work. Most of the time it consists of helping with the online shop by packing orders and dropping them off.
Funkibator is part of a bigger company, called SIP. It’s an umbrella company, which means there are other companies besides Funkibator that belong to it. This is great because I can have the chance to work with them and practice many different skills. For example, Frieda had the opportunity to work with the maintenance team for two weeks as a leader. Indeed we also have the opportunity to be a leader of activities or a team if we choose to.
We call activities social gatherings like Fika or manual, creative workshops like knitting in groups, or pumpkin carving workshop for Halloween.
A great aspect of my volunteering project is that I can plan my days on my own, but of course, I give a daily report to my supervisor every day about what we did this day, and we communicate if we have questions, information to share. And every Friday, we have a meeting in order to talk about the week and the next one, and even what we plan on our weekend.
To give you an overall of my week, this is my daily schedule (I would refer to me and Frieda as ” we”, as we work together most of the time). We bike to go to the office every day (bikes that Funkibator bought for us) when it’s not snowing or raining very deeply, then we start our day usually at 9:30. We always start by checking our work email and making a schedule for our day. On Monday at 10:00 there is the Monday meeting, we assist it. Afterward, we started working on our daily tasks. We have lunch around 12:30.
The structure of each day is more or less similar. It really depends on the tasks we are given. Our day is finished between 16 and 16:30 when we don’t have SFI (Swedish language classes), if so we finish at 19:45 as the classes are from 17:15 and last 2h30. A useful fact to know is that these classes also count as working hours.
Let’s talk about the tasks we are given. To organize them, we classified them as weekly or one-time-only and long term or short term, in a google doc. For example, watering the plants would be a weekly task as we do it twice a week. In another google document, we write the task that we are going to do in the day, in order to have an overview of our day and also cross check what we did, because honestly, it is very satisfying.
We can have tasks more diverse than others. For example, painting the main fence or washing legos that they are going to sell. I’m not going to lie, it is something surprising and funny what we do and I like it.
In the office, there is a green area that we have to take care of and these are the tasks that I enjoy the most. As you can see a real need and impact on the plants, and working with nature is always pleasant.
There it is, my work as a volunteer for Funkibator. I tried to example as clearly as possible what is happening in my day, and I hope I succeed at least a bit. Thank you for your attention.
This is me: I’m Sarah, 21 years old and I’m from the west coast of France. I am ESC volunteer at Funkibator in the city of Växjö in Sweden from September 2021 to August 2022.