This year the volunteer centre partnership has been asked by people who work with volunteers to provide a place for them to meet, share and discover great ideas about volunteering. Learning from others doing the same role is invaluable.  

Funded through South Gloucestershire Area Wide Grant, the partnership has put together a series of forums specifically for Volunteer Organisers. The first was held in Kingswood locality at The Batch in Warmly. 

Corrina Buchanan, Volunteer Consultant at the National Trust spoke about balancing benefit. It was heartening to hear huge organisations such as the National Trust have similar successes and issues as small, entirely volunteer groups in Kingswood. The key message was to be adaptable about the roles and tasks asked of volunteers. This ensures they are getting the experience which truly motivates them and enables each person to bring their individual talents to their role.

Zaya Taylor-Morris, Community Development Co-ordinator for Kingswood, spoke about Health Champions programme and the variety of projects and support that is available to volunteers, which might provide additional incentives, rewards or progression route for their volunteer role.  

The event had plenty of lively discussion including sharing of ideas and experiences. Some of the comments from attendees 

“Lots of hints & tips on management, retention of volunteers. How to deal with cultural change in volunteering” 

“Regardless of size of funding available to organisation, we share common issues. Good discussions which generate ideas. Guest speakers very thought provoking” 

“Insight into National Trust volunteering has given me ideas to transfer to my organisation” 

“Good attendance from a wide-ranging group of people really helped with widening out the discussion”