logo: Volunteers' Week 1-7 June

The benefits of volunteering are myriad to both the organisation and the volunteer.

We all know that being a volunteer is the tried and tested route into conservation work as explained by Lesley Silvera now of Groundwork NE & Cumbria in her article for us at the end of last year. Lesley has had an interesting, 30+-year career in conservation gained from working in many roles and organisations across the UK starting on a conservation initiative in Northumberland run by BTCV as it was then, now TCV, and in those days Lesley had to pay for her week to cover board and lodging!

In this year’s CJS Focus on Volunteering Abbie Johnson, People and Volunteering Manager at Kent Wildlife Trust, outlined how the volunteering roles are structured today and what benefits they bring to the volunteers, like Lesley all those years ago looking to start a career in conservation.

Maybe you’re already working in the sector but still want to help out and make a difference in a small way, that’s where microvoluteering comes in, that’s just little things which take only a few minutes. Heather McLaughlin, Campaigns Officer at Keep Scotland Beautiful explained that “since lockdown, I have done a ‘morning commute’ even whilst working from home. I go out for a walk locally to waken up”, and on her walk she collects an ever increasing amount of litter. She encourages us all to join in by picking up one or two pieces on a walk or by joining (or organising) a community clean up.

Or perhaps you just miss part of the job that you no longer do like ecologist Kate who explained why she volunteers on top of a full time job. Kate finds that in her specialist role she misses doing some of the other work and surveys she did before so she now carries out some of those in voluntary roles which allows her to keep her hand in and also to help out her local groups.

If you'd like to join our amazing army of volunteers giving their time and skills to make a massive difference to our countryside, conservation and wildlife, see what's needed across the sector and available near you by wandering through our online Volunteer Directory.

screen grab of the volunteers directory index.

Latest additions, adverts posted within the last week.
Sectors: Volunteering by what you'll be doing.
Region / Location: Volunteering by location.
Volunteering from Home: details of opportunities for things to do from home.
Volunteering Organisations: Organisations and groups which offer volunteer opportunities but might not have any current adverts.
Conservation Working Holidays: 'Feel good holidays': go on holiday, have a wonderful time and do some conservation work along the way.
Organisations don't forget all of this is advertised FREE! Send us your voluntary opportunities Advertise your volunteer opportunities - it's free.

logo: CJS Volunteers

If the three articles quoted have whetted your appetite for more we have a large library of features covering many elements of volunteering along with some snippets of news about volunteering.  Browse through these here:

If you'd like to write about your time volunteering or have any thoughts and opinions on what can sometimes be a volatile subject please contact our features editor, you'll find more information about what we need from a submitted article here,

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