Local community support group Helping Hands Woburn Sands celebrates its first birthday this month and is calling on more people to get involved as part of Volunteers’ Week, a national campaign which runs from the 1st-7th June.
The group was set up last year mainly to help local elderly people get out and about in response to increased demand and in discussion with the neighbouring Helping Hands group in Aspley Guise. Since then the group has expanded greatly and now has 10 volunteers who offer help and support to more than 25 regular users. They offer a range of services including providing transport to medical appointments, shopping and social events, accompanying group members to events such as tea parties, signposting to local services and facilities, and helping other local organisations.
Vicky Trumper, Director of Neville Funerals, is one of the founding members of the group which is sponsored by the company and the Bedfordshire Rural Communities Charity. She said: “At Neville Funerals, we’re proud to be a family business which has served the local community for more than 140 years. We’re passionate about the communities we serve and we actively seek out opportunities to support local organisations. Having been part of the Woburn Sands community since we opened our office here in 2014, we want to be able to make a tangible contribution to those individuals and families that live and work locally.
“We helped to launch Helping Hands Woburn Sands to provide much-needed support for people who need some extra help with everyday tasks or for people who are isolated and in need of a friendly face. Our volunteers do a fantastic job but we just can’t keep up with demand. There are so many more people who need our help but we desperately need some more volunteers.”
Volunteers’ Week is an opportunity to celebrate and say thank you for the fantastic contribution millions of volunteers make across the UK. As well as helping others, volunteering has been shown to improve volunteers' wellbeing too. It can also help gain valuable new skills and experiences and boost confidence.
Bev Dixon, volunteers for Helping Hands Woburn Sands. She said: “Volunteering is a great way to get out and meet people whilst helping your local community. I’ve made some lovely friends, both with other volunteers in the group and also with the people we help.
I’d recommend volunteering to anyone.
“With Helping Hands Woburn Sands it’s really flexible, you can do as much or as little as you want. You also get lots of support from other people in the group and we’re all very friendly. We really need some more volunteers to keep up with the increase in requests so if you’re thinking about giving it a try, please give us a call. Even if you can only spare a couple of hours a month, it all helps.”
For more information about Helping Hands Woburn Sands or to find out how you can get involved, call 07934 287255.