Blog

The latest articles and ideas from Inspiring Scotland and our partners.

06.06.2018

It’s Volunteers’ Week and we want to say Thank you

From board rooms to community halls, volunteers are the backbone of our thriving third sector.  National Volunteers Week (1 -8th June) is shining a spotlight on the extraordinary commitment of the 12 million volunteers who give their time and experience to charities across the country every week. It is an opportunity for those of us who work in the third sector to say a huge thank you.

Volunteers are active across all areas of our work at Inspiring Scotland, and without them we and the charities we support, would not have been able to change the lives of hundreds of thousands of people across Scotland in our first 10 years.

We are continually amazed by the commitment shown by individuals from Scotland’s business community in helping the charities we work to become truly extraordinary.  Unlike many traditional corporate volunteering programmes based around staff volunteering days, our pool of 400 Pro Bono volunteers focus on using their skills and expertise to fill gaps in knowledge and help organisations to build their capacity, resilience and sustainability, and be better able to overcome challenges.  All our Pro Bono supporters lend their time and knowledge because they share our vision and our values and want to help the voluntary sector to transform the lives of the most disadvantaged people and communities in Scotland.

As an example, please watch this video of Pro Bono supporter Elaine Speirs, an operations expert, using her skills and experience to support Move On to improve the way its food distribution warehouse works.

Inspiring Scotland Pro Bono Supporter Elaine Speirs helps FairShare Glasgow from Inspiring Scotland on Vimeo.

Being a volunteer can also be a very powerful experience for the individual involved; a way to build skills and confidence that can open doors to new life experiences. This is evidenced in our Link Up programme where 1,160 volunteers are now taking an active role in making positive change in their own communities and in their own lives.  These volunteers set up and run many of the groups in their communities and go on to create entirely self-managed programmes embedded in their communities.

Volunteering also creates opportunities for individuals to connect and spend time together.

The whole intandem programme relies on the support and commitment of volunteers to make it a reality. In little over a year, 236 volunteers have signed up and are ready to be intandem mentors, offering their time and support to young people whose home life can be difficult and disruptive. By simply taking an active interest in a young person’s life, a mentor can help each young person to go on to realise their full potential.

As a keen cyclist and experienced charity and business leader, I have found my perfect volunteering balance as a board member and volunteer coach for a children’s cycling club. Whatever way you choose to volunteer, I hope you find it fulfilling.  Thank you for doing it. Volunteering makes a difference.

Celia Tennant

Chief Executive 

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