Volunteers Week 2018 – Tales from the TSI Network

Volunteers’ Week is a time to say thank you for the fantastic contribution volunteers make to Scotland.

During the week, hundreds of events and celebrations take place across the country, saying thank you to volunteers and recognising their invaluable and diverse contribution. You can catch up on what’s happening by following #VolunteersWeekScot and #VolunteersWeek

Here you’ll find Tales from the TSI Network about the support offered by TSIs to people and organisations to make volunteering happen for everyone all across Scotland. We’ll add more each day of Volunteers Week. You can read all of the case studies in one place here.

Volunteer Dundee knows that a great way to get young people interested in volunteering is to get young people who already volunteer to help you. Their Youth Ambassadors are working with them to spread the word and reach out to harder to reach, less engaged young people – find out more here.

Volunteer Midlothian has designed a Get Ready for Volunteering course to help people with mental health difficulties into volunteering. Kirsty attended the course every week and it has led to her volunteering for multiple causes – this is helping her deal with her own personal challenges. Read more here.

Stirlingshire Voluntary Enterprise provides the highly regarded Supported Volunteering Service for people with additional support needs. Read how they have helped Rebecca, who has cerebral palsy, to find a great volunteering placement and who is now developing her skills as a receptionist and administrator – find out more here.

Rehomed to Dundee, members of the Syrian refugee community are trying to integrate into the City’s communities. Volunteer Dundee is working closely with them to help their integration through volunteering. Read more about how volunteering is helping refugees here.

Volunteer Edinburgh’s Health and Wellbeing team knows first-hand how volunteering can play an important part in mental health recovery. Read how they have helped Matthew to volunteer with Marie Curie and how his volunteering and support from the TSI has helped him move his life forward here.

Enabling the voluntary sector to be more inclusive in involving volunteers is a key goal of Volunteer Glasgow and the City’s Volunteering Charter. And it’s working. Read more about their work on this with Victim Support Scotland here.

Fife Voluntary Action works with local partners to help people volunteer who need support to step into/back into employment. Read Marion’s story here.

In Orkney a large percentage of young people seek volunteering opportunities in mainland Orkney – this creates its own challenges in finding suitable placements in what is a relatively small island community. Find out how Voluntary Action Orkney is tackling this here.

Volunteer Dundee works with many retirees and older people, seeking something meaningful in life, for a way to get out and about and to give something back. This stage of life often brings its own set of challenges for many and volunteering can often be the solution. Find out more here.

Volunteering can help people going through some tough times. Read how East Dunbartonshire Voluntary Action has supported Eleanor into volunteering and how this has made a massive impact for her here.

CVS Inverclyde is working in partnership with Scottish Association for Mental Health supporting volunteers with mental health challenges. Read what they have been up to here.

Voluntary Action Angus is working with looked after children and young people – supporting to build confidence, develop skills and expand their opportunities through volunteering – find out more here.

TSIs are connecting young and old: Volunteer Centre Western Isles has enabled one little girls visit to a retirement centre with her volunteering day to kick start a new integrational project – pupils and residents are reaping the rewards. More here. Meanwhile Arran CVS has created a new volunteering opportunity with Arran High School to coincide with the Year of Young People 2018. Generations Together is its intergenerational project – young and old have quickly discovered they are not so different after all. More here.

Finding, enabling and creating volunteering roles that previously didn’t exist are a key part of the work of TSI Moray. For some people, particularly those with pronounced barriers such as a disability, language, learning or as an ex-offender, opportunities might be harder to access, or might not even exist. However, TSI Moray is not one to let any potential hurdle stand in its way. Read more here.

Aberdeen Council for Voluntary Organisations is helping Lewis, a school pupil from Northfield in Aberdeen volunteer with a local adult disability volunteer-led charity. Read about the great things Lewis has been up to, and the difference volunteering has made for him here.

Chance to Change is Voluntary Action South Lanarkshire’s volunteer mentoring project for 16 to 29 year olds. It offers support to those who want to change their lives, seek employment and move beyond or away from negative experiences, such as mental health issues, isolation or re-offeding behaviour. Read more about how volunteering is making a difference for young people in challenging circumstances in South Lanarkshire here.

Thousands of great volunteering opportunities are available in local communities across the country – from micro-volunteering to community based activities to online opportunities. You can find the ones available in your community through your local TSI.