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Vote for Volunteers – ordinary people doing extraordinary things

05 May 2016

In the lead up to Volunteers’ Week 1-12 June, Volunteer Now has launched a campaign to highlight the contribution of volunteers to community life.

The campaign captures the diversity of volunteering across Northern Ireland and features six volunteers, one from each of the six counties, who represent a variety of action from saving lives to making sport happen.

There isn’t a city, town or village in Northern Ireland that doesn’t rely on volunteers to enhance wellbeing and build community resilience.

With the NI Assembly Election fast approaching, Volunteer Now is asking local politicians to recognise and support this important volunteer effort.

Wendy Osborne OBE, Chief Executive, Volunteer Now said:

"On 5th May citizens are asked to vote for the 108 MLAs that make up the Northern Ireland Assembly. Volunteer Now is asking each of those MLAs to remember the hundreds of thousands of individuals who give time through their volunteering to make our communities better places to live in. They need a ’vote of thanks’ and the Volunteers Week celebrations, 1-12 June, offers an ideal opportunity. Let the first act of being an MLA be a big thank you to all those ordinary people doing extraordinary things to make a difference."

Amanda Young from Armagh volunteers with The Ring of Gullion Landscape Partnership.   Amanda said:

“I moved from California to this side of the pond with my kids, 7 years ago and we absolutely love it here!! We have a long history of volunteering both Stateside and over here. I got into volunteering first with the kids school but quickly moved on to areas where I had a specific interest and they just got dragged along! I've volunteered at a  major museum, an animal charity, historic properties, on archaeological sites and with environment management projects. I love it because I gain knowledge, learn new skills, meet new people and make connections, and I firmly believe that we should all do something to give back to society in whatever capacity we are able. I have encouraged my kids to volunteer with projects from a young age as well because I think it helps build character, gives them new skills, helps them to develop empathy, self-worth and selflessness, and develops a sense of responsibility towards the world. It also allows organisations to complete projects  or even just to manage general everyday tasks! I would encourage any and everyone to volunteer somewhere in any capacity, you get so much more than you give!”

To find out more about the wide variety of volunteering opportunities available across Northern Ireland  visit: www.volunteenow.co.uk