Spring into Action with Microvolunteering

Today is International Microvolunteering Day. To celebrate our guest blogger Val from Volunteering Kirklees shares how you can get involved.

 

Isn’t spring a wondSpringerful time?  The birds are singing, the flowers are starting to bloom, the sun is shining and you know summer is just around the corner!  Doesn’t all that make you feel good, energised and raring to go?  ‘Spring into Action’ is a campaign we have launched which lets you channel this feel good energy to making a difference in your community through microvolunteering.

 

For those not familiar with microvolunteering, it’s all about helping out for a short period of time with no long term commitment.  Opportunities available this spring range from helping to maintain the wonderful Trans Pennine Trail to helping to ensure runners have a great run.  Our full list of opportunities can be found here

 

If none of these take your fancy there are other ways you can help out.  Happy Hour is a place where you can find other microvolunteering opportunities available across Kirklees.  You can access current opportunities by clicking the link here.  If you don’t see anything that takes your fancy through either of these sites you can sign up here to be informed of future opportunities.

 

If you have skills that would make a difference to groups in Kirklees but haven’t been able to match them to an opportunity listed, why not offer them on Comoodle?  Comoodle is a platform where you can share your stuff space and skills with your community.  Register your skills here

 

 

Why not put a spring in your step by making adifference to people in Kirkleesmicrovolunteering day is 15th April every year

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End of Year Volunteer Celebration Event

This month our guest blogger is Jim Dodds, Mayor of Kirklees who hosted two end of year celebration events for volunteers last week.

volunteers

This time of year usually provides us with the opportunity to take stock of the past year.  This week I had the pleasure of attending a volunteer celebration event to say thank you to volunteers for the amazing contribution they have made in Kirklees over the past year.  It is estimated that over 30 million hours are given a year in Kirklees: but it is not just the amount of hours given which is amazing. It is also the difference these hours make to the lives of people in Kirklees.  Volunteering has meant:

 

  • we have been able to offer the vital hand of friendship to many of the older generation, for whom it is more difficult to get out and about
  • when some people have experienced trauma in their lives, there has been someone there to say “it’s okay you are not alone”
  • that for people going through tough times we have been able to say, “Here’s some food, here’s some clothes, and let’s together help make life better”
  • people fleeing war and persecution, who have been too close to the worst that the world has to offer, have been welcomed and helped to make a new life here
  • hundreds of miles of paths are regularly cleared so that more of us can experience the stunning beauty of this place we call home
  • children (of all ages!) have been able to take part in outdoor activities, sport and experience the true value of teamwork, physical exercise and all the benefits that this will bring to them throughout their lives
  • people who have been the furthest from the job market have been able to find opportunities to learn and to develop skills in non-threatening and nurturing community environments, often cheered on by people who have been in the same position

 

And this really is where volunteering particularly comes into its own – more so than any other kind of help.  It makes it possible to reach out to people experiencing something incredibly difficult, or personal, because it is something the volunteers themselves have survived.  Whether it be bereavement, sexual violence or life limiting conditions, it means having someone to talk to who has walked that mile in shoes just like yours.  Sometimes that can sometimes make all the difference.  And what better way to show the diffevolunteersrence volunteering makes than from the volunteers themselves.

I said that there are more than 30 million volunteer hours in Kirklees. And it’s true that we may never know the full extent of everything those hours achieve. But we do know that it is much to be thankful for.

So, on behalf of everyone in Kirklees:  Thank You.

Keep up the great work you are doing, and may your work inspire more like you in 2017!

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Bright Ideas – invest your time to make an idea shine

A guest post from One Community, the Community Foundation for the people of Kirklees

Have you got skills that could be used to assist people to develop projects to make a difference in the community, but not been sure about how best to use them?

We at One Community are excited to work with I’m In on a new approach to funding to enable local people and groups bring their Bright Ideas to life.  We will bring together people with ideas, skills and money to develop projects to make a real difference to younger and older people in the community.

Normally One Community follows a formal application process but Bright Ideas allows people to pitch their ideas to us in about 100 words. This is a much quicker process; a different and exciting way to apply for funding.

Businesses, and other local employers, are volunteering their staff to team up with people with Bright Ideas, to create full proposals. This will then be pitched to our donor funders at a Dragon’s Den style event. Donors will choose where to put their money to make a real impact.

Bright Ideas donor Jimmy Dickinson Managing Partner, Longley Farm said: “I am thrilled to be a supporter of the new  ‘Bright  Ideas’ initiative between One Community and Kirklees Council. It’s a great venture. It matches local donations with funds from the Council, to support and develop good ideas from individuals and the voluntary sector.”

Jimmy Dickinson  of Longley Farm with Sir John Harman, Chair of One Community

Jimmy Dickinson of Longley Farm with Sir John Harman, Chair of One Community

Bright Ideas will help community groups and individuals to develop great responses to benefit younger and older people.   We couldn’t do this without the support of local donors and businesses and we are grateful for their support. For anyone thinking about volunteering it’s a great opportunity to work with a small team with diverse backgrounds to come up with innovative solutions to real needs.

Everyone involved is looking forward to the challenge of developing some fantastic project ideas.

If you want to join us then please contact One Community

Tel: 01484 468397

Email: brightideas@one-community.org.uk

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Making a little story go a long way

social-mediaLast week I found out 50% of the UK population is on Facebook, 30% on YouTube and 25% on twitter and Instagram.  That means at least 100,000 people are using social media in Kirklees.  This got me thinking about how we make the best use of these platforms to share the good work we are doing in Kirklees far and wide.

That’s why it’s great we can get John Popham to help us make the most of stories we tell.  John will help us to;

  • Understand the purpose and power of social media and storytelling and how it can benefit your work directly;
  • Know how to capture and share content on the move;
  • Know how to use smartphones to capture high quality video, audio and photography;
  • Understand and use the best equipment for the job;
  • Put our newly developed social media and storytelling skills into practice;

To book on to this masterclass please follow the link here.  Places are limited and are on a first come first served basis so book now to avoid missing out on this opportunity.

I also came across a very useful toolkit for social media use so if you are unable to attend take a look at ‘The Charity Social Media Toolkit’ produced by Skills Platform.  The aim of it is to help organisations become more effective with their use of social media.  It can be accessed here

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