You might not be decking the halls and trawling the supermarket aisles just yet, but that time of year will shortly be upon us and Voluntary Centre Services are expecting once again to hear from volunteers offering their free time over the festive period.
Organisations across the district welcome volunteers who are willing to go that bit further to spread the festive cheer but this does take some planning and, just like finding that elusive special gift, some people can leave it all a bit too late. Here are Voluntary Centre Services’ top tips for getting involved this Christmas.
- Start thinking about what you might like to do and get registered with them. Appointments are available every day at venues throughout the district and can be booked online at www.voluntarycentreservices.org.uk.
- Ask around in your local community to see if there is already an event planned. You could even let them know so that they can help more people to get involved.
- Check online for forums or support pages where you can offer some digital friendship to someone who may be lonely on the big day itself.
- Thinking about something longer term? Follow their volunteering advent calendar on Facebook to find your perfect role for the New Year.
- Unlike your last minute shopping, don’t leave it until Christmas Eve to phone them about volunteering over the holidays!
- Try microvolunteering!
Donate an advent calendar to your local foodbank
You can purchase an advent calendar then donate it to your local foodbank or community larder, where it can go out to a child that might not otherwise receive one. Please remember to do this before 30th November! You can contact your local volunteer centre to find out where your nearest foodbank is.
Annual Christmas Day Lunch in Gainsborough — volunteer drivers needed
Gainsborough House holds an annual Christmas Day lunch for anyone who may be alone or isolated on Christmas Day. Often these people are unable to get out of their homes without the help of volunteer drivers. The committee is looking for volunteer car drivers who can help transport the guests to and from the event. Applications should be returned to Gainsborough House by 16th December. Further information can be obtained by calling 01777 248354 or 07904 212533.
There are many opportunities to help out, depending on your interests. There are lots of roles that depend more on personal qualities such as a caring nature, good listening skills or practical experience rather than specific qualifications or experience. Many roles are flexible too and can fit around other commitments such as work, family or studies, for example befriending roles need caring people with an hour or so a week to spare, mentoring roles need people with experience who can care for and share understanding with others and shop roles look for friendly people who can give good customer service
Whatever you are looking for over Christmas, just drop Voluntary Centre Services a line and they’ll help to get the bauble rolling.
If you’re interested in finding out more about volunteering please get in touch on 01427 613470, visit www.voluntarycentreservices.org.uk or call in to the Guildhall, 10.00am to 4.00pm Monday to Friday. They’ll be closing for Christmas on Friday 20th December and reopen on Thursday 2nd January.