Volunteers’ Week is held every year between 1-7 June and is an event we love to celebrate here at Harbour.
In previous years we have held garden parties, attended workshops and conducted photo shoots with the famous Harbour Rock (see below), but unfortunately due to current restrictions none of this has been possible this year.
We do however still want to celebrate the huge contribution made by volunteers and volunteering to our organisation, and to the lives of our beneficiaries.
Now more than ever the importance of enrichment activities and community engagement has been highlighted, with isolation only going to emphasise the positive impact that our usual calendar of events has on residents’ wellbeing.
Harbour’s external volunteers are responsible for running art group, yoga, befriending sessions, CV writing skills, outings, courses and more.
They work on our farm and in our gardens to keep things running smoothly, they do essential office work and they sit on our board, ensuring the vision of the charity is maintained and always adhered to.
The physical absence of our volunteer team has been felt deeply, and one of our residents was moved to write a poem and send them a big thank you for all they do.
“To all those who help us loads
Ensuring our creativity grows,
And flowers too!
To all our volunteers: we are proud of you,
And we want to say thank you for all you do,
We are looking forward to seeing you again soon.”
– Harbour Housing Resident
We managed to meet with one of our external volunteers for a socially distanced catch-up to find out what volunteering here means to him. (video below)
It is not just members of the community that volunteer at Harbour, but our own residents too.
Volunteering is a huge part of the resident experience and can have a hugely positive impact on individuals, helping to build self-esteem, life skills and a connection to the local community.
Volunteering takes different forms depending on interest and can include working on our small holding, in the garden, in the kitchen, community litter picks and helping us to run our stall at local events.
Here are a few of our residents speaking about their experiences of volunteering. (video below)
Volunteering is hugely important in so many ways, and we hope to be able to celebrate properly when it is safe to do so.