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Give something back to society - become a volunteer

Press release issued: 9 February 2004

Bristol University will host the city's first-ever Volunteer Recruitment Fair on Thursday, February 26.

Bristol University will host the city's first-ever Volunteer Recruitment Fair on Thursday, February 26.

The Fair, organised by the University in association with Volunteering Bristol, will give members of the public the chance to find out about the wealth of volunteering opportunities available in the region.  The free event will take place from 11.15 am to 6.30 pm at the Wills Memorial Building, Queen's Road.  Organisers promise there will be no 'hard sell' - just plenty of interesting information.

The Fair will be opened by Professor Eric Thomas, Vice-Chancellor and Councillor Bill Martin, Lord Mayor of Bristol.

With over 50 stalls at the event, there will be something for everyone. Well-known organisations taking part include Royal National Institute for the Blind and Saneline, together with less widely recognised groups such as CEMVO and Time 2 Share.  CEMVO encourages and supports individuals to volunteer within black and minority ethnic organisations and Time 2 Share is a volunteer befriending scheme for children and young people with learning difficulties.

The University is committed to supporting the city's social infrastructure and last year implemented a staff volunteering day.  This allows one paid day's leave per year for each of the University's 5,300 members of staff.  In addition, over 800 students are involved in volunteering.

Kim Fitzgerald, the University's Outreach Development Officer, said: 'We are delighted to be hosting the Fair, especially as it's the first time such an event has taken place in Bristol.  The Fair is open to all and everyone is welcome to attend.

'The University may be an international organisation, but it also places a very high value on its relationship with Bristol - including the voluntary sector, which plays such a vital role in the city's success.'

Jim McNeill, Service and Development Manager at Volunteering Bristol, said: 'It's terrific that the University is opening its doors to allow the general public, students and staff to meet face-to-face with so many of Bristol's community and voluntary organisations.

'I'm sure the Fair will provide a great opportunity for those who are interested in offering their much needed skills and time as volunteers.'

The University aims to be a responsible member of the community by supporting the social and economic infrastructure of the area.  It seeks to work collaboratively with all sections of the community - public, private and voluntary - and runs an outreach programme to encourage such partnerships.  The aims of the programme are:

  • To improve links between the University, people and organisations in and around Bristol;
  • To work collaboratively with stakeholders in the city and further afield;
  • To promote the University's research findings;
  • To promote widening participation and lifelong learning;
  • To promote the University as a community resource.
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