Volunteering at Scottish Council

June 4, 2021 Blog - ENABLE Scotland Ivan Cohen

Hi, my name is Ivan Cohen, and I am the Convenor of ENABLE Scotland’s Scottish Council. Scottish Council is made up of volunteers who give up their time to be Committee Members for ACE, ACE Youth, Families, and Branches. I was a member of the Committee for 6 years. I am now the Convenor of Scottish Council and have been for 4 years.

Being a volunteer with Scottish Council is an amazing opportunity and something I have loved and gotten a lot from. I have also seen the other committee member volunteers of Scottish Council develop their skills and build their confidence from being part of it.

Being a volunteer on Scottish Council has meant I have learned lots of new skills including:

  • Public speaking
  • How to organise a meeting
  • Decision making
  • Analysing information
  • Campaigning

It has also really helped me, and the other volunteers feel more confident and independent in travelling to the meetings and being able to use our voices and give opinions.  We have met new people from all over Scotland, and many of us have made friends for life.

Being a volunteer member of ENABLE Scotland’s Scottish Council meant I was invited to speak at an Inclusion Europe conference during the pandemic. ENABLE Scotland supported me to share my experiences with people from across Europe on how the pandemic has affected me and other people with learning disabilities in Scotland.

An important part of Scottish Council, and our roles there, is being able to speak directly to the CEO Theresa about what is happening in the charity and what we think should happen going forward. This includes having input to decisions around campaigns we will take forward and decisions on how the charity is run.

I love being part of ENABLE Scotland and have been a member for a long time so being able to give back as a volunteer at Scottish Council means a lot to me. Being the first person with a learning disability to be the Convenor of Scottish Council is also my proudest achievement.

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