For cerebral palsy awareness month, Adam Baird writes about how volunteering at his local radio station has allowed him to develop his skills as a radio DJ as well as boosting his confidence.
“My name is Adam Baird and my passion is music and sports. When I saw a poster advertising volunteering opportunities at the local Hospital Radio station when I was 18, I went along to see if there was anything I could do for them. I spoke to them about my idea to have a show every Saturday with music mixed with sports news such as the half time and full time football scores.
“The Station Manager liked the idea and surprised me by saying I could do a weekly show every Saturday after some training! I enjoy combining my favourite interests in a two hour show and have managed to do at least 40 shows each year for the past 21 years. I enjoy it just as much today as I did at the beginning.
“The radio station has now moved from Hospital Radio to an online station available for anyone to listen to. This means I don’t need to be so careful about what I am playing. On Hospital Radio, I had a list of songs that I thought might not be appropriate for my audience. Songs such as ‘I just died in your arms tonight’, ‘The first cut is the deepest’, ‘Beds are burning’ and ‘Achy Breaking Heart’ are good examples of songs that were on my blacklist!
“I had no idea it would be such a long term and rewarding experience for me when I volunteered. It has given me confidence and something for me to look forward to every week. I am so pleased that I had the courage to volunteer all those years ago. Hopefully this article will encourage others to consider volunteering for something that becomes a big part of their life.”