Leading the way on volunteering

YOUNG people in Angus are more involved in volunteering than other areas of Scotland (writes Shaun Harper).

Based on recent national statistics young people are more likely to volunteer in Angus than other areas of Scotland. As part of the Millennium Volunteering Programme, which measures young people’s participation in volunteering, 383 young people aged 16-25 completed up to 200 hours of volunteering.

The only area to surpass this was Glasgow however given the population size the returns for Angus are indeed remarkable.

One of the young people who benefited from being involved in MV, Kay Robertson, is an example of how volunteering has helped young people to progress their lives.

Kay is a third year student studying Community Learning and Development at Dundee University and on placement at Volunteer Centre Angus. where she started the MV project locally.

Kay stated, “I was introduced to the MV awards through my involvement as a volunteer at the Attic Project in Brechin.

“Little did I know then that I would end up at University and being on placement at the volunteer centre that started the awards scheme locally.

“Being a volunteer at the Attic project built my confidence and skills and having an MV award definitely helped me get into uni.”

Kay went on to say: “Being at the Volunteer Centre on placement is brilliant.

“I see the real differences they are making to people’s lives, especially people who face significant barriers, to see people’s live being turned round for the better is really brilliant.

“It is a brilliant experience just like the Attic, it’s about putting people first and valuing what they can do rather than how they’re judged.

“I would urge all young people to get involved. It helped me and it is there to help other young people get the recognition they deserve for their volunteering.”

Morag McKenzie who leads on the MV Awards for Volunteer Centre Angus said, “I am delighted but not surprised by these figures.

“In Angus we have two per cent of Scotland’s population but are second in the table for delivering on MV.

“This demonstrates the volunteering culture here in Angus.

“In Angus we have a volunteering ambition and projects such as the life skills centre, Praxis, whish are the envy of all other areas, but the real difference is about partnership.

“We know Angus has amongst the higher levels of volunteering within Scotland and some of this is down to the hard work we put in here at VCA; but it’s also about how we work with agencies.

“This shows how strong our community planning partnership and joint working arrangements are here in Angus.”