STAFF at a city charity which has helped thousands of people become volunteers are celebrating after reaching another milestone.
Worcester Volunteer Centre marked its 25th anniversary with a special dinner at Worcestershire County Cricket Club’s ground last Saturday (October 25).
About £1,500 was raised on the night for the charity, which has proved to be a vital service to companies looking to take on volunteers.
Sally Ellison, chief officer at the centre on The Tything, said they had come a long way since a group of people in St John’s helped to set up the Worcester City Volunteer Bureau in 1989.
“It was very small team, with one part-time member of staff, but now there are ten of us,” she said. “We provide services to the community, such as transport, shopping and gardening.
“But the big thing which we do is recruit volunteers on behalf of other organisations.
“I have been involved for 23 years and we have had thousands of people come through our doors which have been recruited.
“Volunteering has also changed quite a lot as it used to be more rigid. You used to turn up on a Monday and go to a certain place, but now there is a greater flexibility so you might be volunteering online or doing ‘one-off’ volunteering.”
Sally said the charity’s latest landmark was another highlight for the centre which moved to its base at The Tything in 1995 after securing £120,000 from the National Lottery.
But she admitted “survival” was still their main aim as they look to keep the organisation afloat for another 25 years.
“There is certainly a level of pride to get this far as there have been several volunteer centres which have closed across the country,” she said. “The fact we are still here and doing our job to the best of our ability is very good news.
“But survival will be our aim going forward as it is a tough world at the moment. We have got certain things we know we will carry on and hopefully the organisation will continue to deliver services to the community.”