Mayor’s blog: Volunteering can be so rewarding

My time as Mayor is rapidly coming to an end. I’ve met with dozens of community groups and attended several major events in Worcester which simply could not function without the support of volunteers.

People who volunteer tell me that they do it because they want to make a difference. However, what has also really struck me is just how much volunteers get out of the experience too – and this is something I think we do need to shout about to encourage others to come forward.

Volunteering helps to combat isolation as people make new friendships; and people who volunteer learn new skills and get a confidence boost, which can help them get a job or be beneficial in other areas of life.

Volunteering often involves physical exercise, but above all, I think it gives people a massive mental health boost to know that they are part of the community and are making a positive contribution to it.

Many volunteers I’ve met are extremely modest about their achievements, and they often have a tendency to shy away from the limelight. However, I think it’s high time we shouted about the enormous difference they are making both to Worcester as a place and to the people who live here.

I’ve tried to play my part – a thank you goes a long way. It’s been my pleasure to welcome many hundreds of volunteers for a guided tour of the Guildhall to be followed by tea in the Mayor’s Parlour.