Charity calls for volunteers to help ease ‘unprecedented’ pressure on public services

A major recruitment drive is being launched for volunteers to ease “unprecedented” pressure on public services.

The Royal Voluntary Service said challenges facing the UK are “acute”, adding there are huge benefits to people who volunteer.

A survey by the charity of 1,000 people who already volunteer found that most reported an increase in self-confidence and mental health.

RVS urged people of all ages and backgrounds to volunteer, especially as levels of loneliness and poor mental health were said to be highest among 18 to 24-year-olds.

Rebecca Kennelly of the RVS said: “In the past, the benefits of volunteering have been disproportionately enjoyed by those of higher socioeconomic groups.

“We want to see a cultural shift and for people of all ages and backgrounds to be able to integrate volunteering into their everyday life and benefit from the experience.

“Volunteering should be as accessible as possible so it’s not a huge undertaking but a pivotal part of people’s everyday life.

“There is something to suit everyone, whether it’s providing an older person with company at home, running an exercise class for patients on a hospital ward or putting culinary skills to use at a lunch club, our volunteers make a tangible difference to so many people, with millions of acts of kindness.”

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2019, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) Royal Voluntary Service.