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District Dispatch - 4 June 2024

This year marks the 40th year of Volunteers' Week, which takes place between Monday 3 June and Sunday 9 June.

Diane Shepherd (900x600)

It is celebrated by thousands of charities and voluntary organisations across the UK — and looks to inspire more people to make a difference in their communities.

We are very lucky that the Chichester District has so many amazing volunteers, who make a huge contribution to their local communities and charities. All of this time, care and support makes a significant difference to so many people.

This is why we want to use this opportunity to say a big thank you to all of those who play such an important role in supporting our communities and charities. It's so important to take a moment to recognise and thank everyone who gives their time to help support others. Hard-working volunteers are the heart and soul of our local sports clubs and community groups, those helping to build a vibrant community, and the many compassionate individuals who give their time in our food banks, charity shops, animal rescue centres — and everything in between. We appreciate all you do to help the people and places in our district to thrive.

Volunteers' week is also a great opportunity to encourage other people to get involved. Voluntary Action Arun and Chichester (VAAC) are holding a Volunteer Recruitment Fair on Saturday 8 June between 10am and 2pm at Chichester City Council. Come along for a chance to meet some of the local groups looking for volunteers and find out about what they do and the difference you can make.

Voluntary Action Arun and Chichester is a charity that promotes and supports voluntary and community groups across the Arun and Chichester Districts. Their vision is to create a strong, vibrant sector that empowers individuals and communities. Whether you are looking to volunteer or need assistance with your group, VAAC provides free advice, information and resources.

They have even launched an app to help you find your perfect volunteer role. The 'Get Volunteering' app provides a quick and easy way of seeing what volunteering roles are in your area and finding out more about getting involved. You can also set VAAC as your local centre and receive notifications each time a new opportunity is added, so you never miss hearing about a new role! To download the app, simply search for 'Get Volunteering' on the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.

You can also search and register for local volunteering opportunities on the VAAC website (opens new window). As a council, we provide funding to VAAC to support their work, and we work very closely with them on a whole range of projects and initiatives.

We would also like to thank the many volunteers who support us with our work — including those who help in our parks and gardens, and those who help us to keep our district look clean and beautiful. Whether you are a resident, community group, school or business, our Adopt an Area scheme encourages everyone to take pride in where they live and the places they enjoy. The area you adopt can be as small as the pavement outside your home, a favourite footpath, play area, village or shop frontage — all we ask is that you help keep that space litter free. You just decide on the area you wish to adopt and then sign up to our Chichester District Council 'adopt an area' . By working together, we can all make a big difference to everyone who lives, works and visits here.

Best Wishes

Diane Shepherd

Chief Executive at Chichester District Council