Meet the man who captured the magic of last year’s Christmas. Paul MacMahon originally got in touch with us to offer his services as a driver for our Christmas Day lunch, but when he came along to the training day, he realised he could use his skills as videographer to capture the day on film.
The two-minute film for the 2017 lunch features some of our lovely guests and Marmalade Trust’s founder Amy Perrin, and captures the warmth and sense of connection. Volunteering can be a life-changing experience for all those involved. Paul was so inspired by the day (and us by him!) that he now wants to pursue a fulltime career in videography.
We caught up with Paul to ask him more about making the film and why he wanted to volunteer in the first place.
Paul, why did you volunteer for the Marmalade Trust in the first place?
When I first heard of the work Marmalade Trust do I was moved to tears. The ‘soul food’ we get from being with our friends and family is really easy to take for granted, and I think I imagined what life would be like if I was completely on my own. The urge to help was very strong. No one deserves to be alone, regardless of their background and situation. Marmalade are creating communities of people who would find it difficult or impossible to lead a life that included other people otherwise and that’s brilliant.
What were the filming days like for you? Any highlights?
I was surprised by the amazing atmosphere in the pub. There was an overwhelming warmth and kindness in the air – your senses were filled with it. I was very flattered that one of the ladies took a shine to me and had asked to have a selfie! (see below!) It was a lovely memento of the day. The selflessness of all the volunteers was also particularly memorable.
How can others provide their skills to us in this way? (i.e. skills based volunteering)
I think the compulsion to support any organisation or charity comes from a quite personal place. Once that is there, it’s simply a case of figuring out what the most constructive use of the time you want to use is. I had a great personal and professional experience volunteering with the Marmalade Trust. I gained knowledge from working in environments and with people I’ve never worked with before, and I got to experiment with producing something completely different to anything in my professional life. For me personally, I’m really glad I decided to help out, and I can only hope what we’ve produced will help the Trust grow this year and beyond. This project has opened my eyes to the fact that I would dearly love to make a career from making videos for charitable organizations and NGOs.
Contact Paul: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’d like to offer up your own skills, please visit our Volunteer section on the home page.