Volunteer group wants to raise £5,000 to fight coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 11:55 03 June 2020

VANS volunteers Pete Rideout and Pat Byles at The Little Teapot Café at Clevedon Hospital. Picture: Janice Saunders

VANS volunteers Pete Rideout and Pat Byles at The Little Teapot Café at Clevedon Hospital. Picture: Janice Saunders


A volunteer group has set a fundraising challenge to raise £5,000 during Volunteers’ Week.

Volunteers’ Week runs until Sunday and during the week it is a chance for people to say thank you for the contribution volunteers make across the UK.

This year however, things are different, with celebratory events and activities cancelled due to coronavirus.

Voluntary Action North Somerset (VANS) had planned a volunteers’ fair for June and even though it had to cancel this time around, it is still going to acknowledge the work that thousands of volunteers have carried out across North Somerset during the pandemic.

VANS has launched an awareness raising and community-giving campaign to help increase an understanding of the work that the plethora of community helpers have been carrying out during lockdown.

The campaign will also help raise funds to support organisations that have adapted their service delivery and those recently formed in response to the pandemic.

In excess of 7,000 additional volunteers have been recruited across North Somerset and they have been at the heart of the community response, with many carrying out neighbourly activities through coordinated community and mutual aid groups as well as other activities with voluntary, charitable and social care sector organisations.

These volunteers have been vital to ensure vulnerable members within communities have been able to access necessities, support and services during this time.

VANS’ fundraising challenge is to raise as much as it can throughout the month of June, with the hope of reaching £5,000 during volunteers’ week.

A VANS spokesman said: “We’ve set the bar high but we are determined to raise as much as we can so that we can distribute funds during July, across the North Somerset Together network and to the wider community, delivering services throughout the region.

“A funding panel will assess applications to ensure that funding gets to those people and groups who need it most.

“We are asking communities that would like to make a contribution to support this good work, to go to www.gofundme.com/f/giving-back-to-volunteers-across-north-somerset and donate to support the great work taking place within these groups and organisations to enable it to continue in the future.”

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