Volunteers Week is an annual celebration of volunteering in the first week of June. In 2021 we organised a photo competition and a special meeting of the Voluntary Sector Network, as well as delivering two training sessions.
Volunteer Centre Redbridge would like to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who helped them to celebrate Volunteers’ Week this year. Centre manager Liz Woodman comments that "It was wonderful to be able to say thank you to the fantastic volunteers of Redbridge and to hear all your stories of volunteering."
A special thanks to everyone who submitted a photo for our Volunteers’ Week photo competition. We received a wide variety of photos – from selfie headshots, through to pictures of objects that told a story about the type of volunteering done. We received 71 photos from 24 different individuals/organisations which was amazing. These were then sent to our judge - Roy Chacko: Reporter for the Ilford Recorder, and this is what Roy said:
“Thank you so much to everyone who submitted photos as part of this competition. There were so many great submissions… it was very difficult to cut them down to choose a winner... The stories behind so many of the pictures were really incredible and highlighted the great work done by so many people who stepped up in a very difficult year when a lot of our systems failed us.”
Roy picked two runners up and one overall winner. His decision was based on the story the photo told.
Second Runner up was GoodGym Redbridge, with a picture of volunteers supporting Redbridge Covid-19 Mutual Aid, by helping load and unload food donations and purchases. GoodGym are a community of Redbridge walkers/runners/cyclists that keep active by doing good in their neighbourhood.
First Runner up was: Jessica King, volunteer at Hawkey Hall vaccination centre, Woodford. Jessica has been volunteering since the beginning of the rollout in December after being made redundant in October. She says “the volunteering experience has been life changing".
The overall winner was: Iford Salvation Army with their picture: ‘Christmas morning at Malachi Place'. This was the first Christmas meal some of their clients had eaten in years and first Christmas at Malachi Place. They said “There was a slight panic when planning this as due to the covid risk assessment only one person could safely be in the kitchen at a time, fortunately enough a family who all live together, ‘one bubble,’ offered to help!”
Roy said: “I chose the Christmas at Malachi Place photo as the winner because it really exemplified people getting creative to help others in their time of need... it's so great that the Tailor family and everyone at the Ilford Salvation Army was able to provide a proper Christmas for everyone at Malachi Place.”
Once again – thank you to all who entered. We have been sharing the photos and stories on social media and will continue to do so (Twitter: @RedbridgeCVS #RedbridgeVolunteers.)
We also ended up with three stories in the Ilford Recorder off the back of this competition:
- Volunteers' Week: Engineer helps boy with cerebral palsy by modifying walker
- Covid heroes honoured in photo competition
- Photo contest submissions recognise work of volunteers
Voluntary Sector Network and Training Sessions
In addition to the photo competition we also dedicated our Voluntary Sector Network meeting on Wednesday 2 June to recognising and celebrating volunteering across the borough. Hear we heard some inspirational stories from a number of volunteer involving organisations. We also held two training sessions on managing volunteers, one on the 3rd and another on the 7th - and both were well attended.
Throughout the week we also celebrated on Twitter and Facebook. Thank you to everyone who participated.