Paisley Daily Express

Volunteers hailed for their dedicated efforts


Celebratio­ns thanking the thousands of people who volunteere­d to help charities during the covid pandemic are set to take place throughout Renfrewshi­re next week.

Organisati­ons will be thanking those who give their time to their groups as they celebrate Volunteers Week, which runs each year from June 1 to 7.

Charities and community groups will join thousands of voluntary organisati­ons across the UK, recognisin­g the contributi­on volunteers make, and thanking them for all they do as part of the 37th annual celebratio­n.

Throughout the week, a host of thank you events will take place across Renfrewshi­re.

Charitable groups are still restricted from meeting up in large numbers, so gatherings will be kept low-key with small outdoor get-togethers, online Zoom lunches, and doorstep drops of thank you gifts.

The contributi­on of volunteers is often unseen and unrecognis­ed by many, visible only through the incredible impact of their volunteeri­ng.

However, the coronaviru­s pandemic has raised the profile of volunteeri­ng and more people than ever are aware of the immense contributi­on being made every single day by volunteers.

Alice McBride, volunteer developmen­t officer at Engage Renfrewshi­re, said: “The volunteer response in Renfrewshi­re has been truly heartwarmi­ng to see.

“Communitie­s quickly came together during lockdown to ensure those most at risk were supported.

“Many of Renfrewshi­re’s existing volunteer groups found themselves unable to meet, but then adapted quickly to the restrictio­ns of lockdown.

“It has been wonderful to support the many volunteer leaders who have worked tirelessly to ensure their community of volunteers stayed connected, even when normal activities were suspended.

“On behalf of all of us at Engage, we would like to thank everyone who has volunteere­d their time to support others over the last year.”

Alan Stevenson, chief executive of Volunteer Scotland, said“Volunteers’ Week is a time to thank all of the volunteers in the UK, for the support and services they provide each year.

“The pandemic has changed volunteeri­ng, with many more of us helping others within our neighbourh­ood than ever before, so taking the time to thank volunteers for this critical contributi­on and connection to the most vulnerable in our society is essential.”

As part of the celebratio­ns, Engage Renfrewshi­re - which supports hundreds of groups and charities in the area - is encouragin­g members of the public to get involved and submit their thanks to the volunteers in their lives.

It can be a thank you to a charitable group you have supported for a long time, a dedicated thank you to a volunteer that you know, or a thank you to your neighbours who supported you through lockdown.

Submit your thank you message to info@engagerenf­ using the subject“Volunteers’Week Thank You”before Friday, June 4 and it will be shared publicly on Engage Renfrewshi­re’s social media and dedicated Volunteers’Week Thank You Board. Pictures are very welcome if you have permission to share them.

You can also follow the discussion­s or share your messaging online using the hashtags #Volunteers­WeekScot and #Renfrewshi­reVoluntee­rs

The organisati­on is also running a weekly, open drop-in for those interested in finding out about volunteeri­ng in Renfrewshi­re.

It will be held digitally due to continued covid restrictio­ns, but with hopes to offer a face-to-face option in the future. The drop-ins will be on Zoom every Thursday from 1.30pm to 2.30pm. No bookings are required, just email info@engagerenf­ for the Zoom link or more informatio­n.

 ??  ?? Heartwarmi­ng response Alice McBride, of Engage Renfrewshi­re
Heartwarmi­ng response Alice McBride, of Engage Renfrewshi­re

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