Spotlight on: Karolina Gerlich – from volunteer to CEO of care workers charity the National Association of Care and Support Workers

August 24, 2021

Karolina became a Dot Dot Dot guardian in 2017, living in Canning Town, east London. When she wasn’t a full-time care worker, Karolina was spending much of her free time volunteering with the National Association of Care and Support Workers, acting as CEO. Find out from Karolina how guardianship and volunteering enabled her to gain a full-time paid role as the chief executive of the charity she had dedicated her spare time to.

During the first two years of my guardianship with Dot Dot Dot, I was working full time as a care worker. At the same time, I was dedicating a huge amount of time to volunteering as the CEO of the National Association of Care and Support Workers. I was spending much of my time helping to give care workers a voice, representing the workforce and participating in meetings with stakeholders. Ultimately, all of my voluntary work was around championing those in the profession as skilled professionals who make a huge contribution to the economy and to society. 

Being able to dedicate so much of my time to representing care workers with this organisation meant that as of March last year, I was given a full-time paid role as CEO. In my role as chief executive, I run the charity and develop stakeholder relationships and engagement. As care workers are a low-paid workforce, we give out financial grants to to support their wellbeing and mental health – there’s a lack of funding in the sector and so due to many having to self-isolate during the pandemic, there were also a huge amount of care workers were missing out on fair pay. Last year we gave £2.2 million to over 3,200 care workers. 

I first found out about property guardianship in the Evening Standard. When I did my research, Dot Dot Dot stood out from other organisations doing the same thing because of the volunteering element – lower costs combined with volunteering was an idea I could really get behind. Other companies seemed to prioritise profit over people, but at Dot Dot Dot, they’re much more focused on doing the right thing and putting their guardians first. 

I viewed a 2-bed property in east London that I ended up moving into – there was lots of space and the value was unbeatable for London. If I’d wanted to privately rent somewhere of the same size, it would have cost me double the amount. I ended up being a guardian for almost three years, which was an overall positive experience for me as it meant that I was able to use my money more wisely rather than most of it going towards living expenses. If I was looking for affordable housing in the future, I’d definitely look to live with Dot Dot Dot again.

Read more stories from our 10 great guardians who we’re highlighting as part of our tenth birthday celebrations. 

This week’s top five volunteering opportunities

April 29, 2016

1.Listening Ears

Listening EartsWhere: Abbey Wood Community Centre
When: Various
Category: Listening, Mental Health, Support Services
Commitment Level: Ongoing

Listening Ears is a Charitable organisation established to address the increasing rate of depression arising from issues surrounding pain, grief, distress and isolation. They run a variety of projects with a range of clients. To find out more and to apply, click here.

2.Action on Hearing Loss – Fundraisers

action on hearing lossWhere: Kings Cross Underground Station
When: 13th May
Category: Fundraising, Disabilities
Commitment Level: One Off

Action on Hearing Loss are looking for people to fundraise in Kings Cross Underground Station on the 13th May. To register your interest, click here.

3.Crossness Victorian Pumping Station

crossnessWhere: Crossness, SE2 9AQ
When: Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays – 9am-4pm.
Category: Gardening, Maintenance, Education, Administration
Commitment Level: Regular Commitment

There are many opportunities for volunteers to assist in the restoration, maintenance and administration of the Victorian pumping station at Crossness and to create an exhibition of sanitary history. They currently have a large range of unfilled vacancies. To find out more about the roles and to apply, click here.

4.Volunteer Teaching Assistant for Refugees

AFRILWhere: Lewisham
When: Saturdays
Category: Teaching, Young People, SEN
Commitment Level: Regular Commitment

This organisation works to relieve poverty and isolation among refugees, asylum seekers and other ethnic minorities in Lewisham. They are looking for volunteers to support the teachers in delivering literacy and numeracy lessons to children with SEN across all classes. For more information and to register your interest, click here.

5.Cross Roads Care

crossroads-care-logoWhere: Eltham, SE9
When: Tuesdays and Wednesdays – 10am-2.30pm
Category: Dementia, Support, Elderly
Commitment Level: Regular Commitment

Crossroads Care South East London run two memory cafes in Greenwich. The cafes are a friendly and informal meeting place and offer support to people with dementia and their carers. They are looking for people who are willing to be trained and supported to become Café Volunteers to support staff. If you are interested in this opportunity email: l.munns@ccsel.org or call: 01322 336086.

What are you looking for today?

Marketing Permissions

Dot Dot Dot Property Ltd will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing by email. Please confirm you are happy to hear from us by:

Email
You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting us at hello@dotdotdotproperty.com. We will treat your information with respect. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By checking the box, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

GDPR
We use MailChimp as our marketing automation platform. By clicking below to submit this form, you acknowledge that the information you provide will be transferred to MailChimp for processing in accordance with their Privacy Policy and Terms.