I have just attended an interview for a volunteer role at a charity for older people.

It is a charity that regularly appeals for volunteers in the media.

When I arrived at the date and time specified by the charity, the person I came to see wasn't there and hadn't sent a message to say they weren't coming.

I was told I would have been seeing someone else anyway but they had just gone out to lunch and no one had any idea when they would back.

When I asked if I should wait, they shrugged and said it was up to me.

Reluctantly, I left feeling like I was an inconvenience.

I felt heavy hearted as this is a regular occurrence when applying for voluntary work.

I have several examples of attending for interviews and no one knowing anything about it or being told to turn up to volunteer and then sent away.

As part of this volunteering role at the charity I had to fill in an application form and obtain two work references which they had confirmed they had received.

All this was wasted effort, plus the cost of travel to interviews.

I had even cancelled an appointment to go to the interview at the time they specified and confirmed my attendance.

The same week I had an interview at a cancer charity which, after wasting two hours of my time showing me round, then told me it had no vacancies and to try elsewhere.

This was said in front of other volunteers. ?

Another time, an advice charity told me blatantly it would not accept volunteers with certain disabilities. The irony being it gives advice on discrimination.

You often hear how volunteering is good for mental wellbeing and about giving something back.

In my experience, I have been treated like a disposable commodity and treated without empathy or basic courtesy which has been very damaging to my wellbeing with no positive outcome.

It seems there are many people willing to work for free and it would seem people just want to exploit this with the people in charge of recruiting volunteers having a deficit of people skills.

I find charities the worst as they seem to enjoy going through all the procedures such as applying for DBS checks and references only to then lose interest and not bother going any further, even when references are satisfactory and DBS checks clear.

?I have lost a lot of time and money in my quest to do something positive to help others.

I am not expecting thanks, just a bit a common courtesy wouldn't go amiss.

Name and address supplied