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5th June 2024

A Celebration of Volunteering

On Monday, June 3rd, Day 1 of Volunteers’ Week, we hosted a special event at the Barracks Conference Centre in Stirling to commemorate 40 years of Volunteers’ Week and Volunteer Scotland.

The celebration brought together our dedicated members (volunteer-involving organisations from near and far), our Board Members, the Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, and the true stars of the show—the Volunteers.

At Volunteer Scotland, our mission is to create a Scotland where everyone can volunteer more often and throughout their lives. We are committed to making volunteering an enjoyable, rewarding, and fulfilling experience for every volunteer. As we mark the 40th anniversary of Volunteers’ Week and Volunteer Scotland, it has never been more important to take the time to recognise, thank, and celebrate all that Scotland’s volunteers do.

Alan Stevenson, Volunteer Scotland CEO, opened the event by welcoming all in attendance and thanking the volunteers. He said:

“Volunteers’ Week is 40, as is Volunteer Scotland. In a way, Volunteer Scotland and Volunteers’ Week grew up together – being founded and initiated simultaneously. Volunteers’ Week has always been (and will continue to be) a time when we set aside in our busy year to recognise, celebrate and 'thank' volunteers for their many valuable and varied contributions throughout the year. Initiatives like the Big Help Out also provide an opportunity to bring in new volunteers and let them experience volunteering. Today, therefore, is all about celebrating ‘all things volunteering’.”

He then went on to introduce the Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, Shirley-Anne Somerville, who said:

“The amount of time and commitment and enthusiasm that volunteers have given is something we need to take a step back and recognise. Thousands of people from all over the country make vital contributions to every single part of our society. They do it without fanfare, they do it without financial reward. But they do it because it’s the right and the valuable thing to do. And because of the impact it has on their communities.”

Also speaking were dedicated volunteers who shared their inspiring stories: Eileen Stewart from Chest, Heart & Stroke Scotland and Neil Murray from the Stroke Association.

Following their speeches, the event transitioned to lunch and networking, providing an opportunity to hear more volunteer stories from Tony, Caroline, Margarita, and Christopher.

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The event was a heartfelt acknowledgment of the invaluable contributions volunteers make every day, highlighting the significant role they play in building stronger, more connected communities across Scotland. Thank you to everyone who joined us in celebrating all of Scotland’s volunteers for #VolunteersWeekScot.