A Year of Volunteering will be launched by Councillor Jackie Morris when she is sworn in as Lord Mayor at Nottingham Castle on Saturday 4 July.
During her year in office, the Lord Mayor will promote volunteering and charitable giving under the banner of Looking After Each Other – a City-wide campaign to increase volunteering in Nottingham.
For many, volunteering involves regularly giving a significant amount of time for a cause, group or charity but now the message is changing; as part of the Looking After Each Other campaign the Lord Mayor will promote a ‘Year of Volunteering’ offering a choice of opportunities designed to fit in with people’s busy lifestyles. All of the opportunities are targeted towards supporting the most vulnerable children and adults in Nottingham.
Low time-commitment opportunities include simple acts such as gifting second hand equipment or toys to families in crisis or sharing your practical or parenting skills with families that might be struggling. Schemes like Rally Round also enable people to sign up to give small amounts of their time to look after a neighbour by looking in on them, doing their shopping or giving them an occasional lift to a medical appointment or social activity.
For those who do have more time to give, volunteering opportunities include becoming a school Governor, giving space in your home to become a ‘Host Family’ for the children of families in crisis, becoming a ‘befriender’ to a vulnerable adult or even taking on the responsibility of becoming a respite foster carer.
As well as championing a ‘Year of Volunteering’ during her term of office, the Lord Mayor will be promoting a scheme that provides books to Nottingham children under five years old.
Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a book gifting scheme that was launched in America by the singer and which is supported in Nottingham by partners including Nottingham City Council, the Rotary Club of Nottingham, Castle Cavendish Ltd and Small Steps Big Changes – a £45m programme of activities and initiatives to give Nottingham’s 0-3 year olds a better start in life.
People in Nottingham can go on line www.dollybooksnottingham.org to give to the Imagination Library. A one off donation of £25 will pay for one child to have books delivered to their home each month for an entire year. The charity helps parents and children to enjoy exploring books together – looking at the pictures, talking about the stories and just having fun. The Imagination Library is proven to help children improve their reading and writing skills, giving them the best start in life and preparing them for their school days.
Councillor Jackie Morris, Lord Mayor of Nottingham, said: “As the new Lord Mayor for Nottingham, I’m looking forward to being a champion for volunteering and charitable giving in the City. However large or small, we can all do our bit to look after each other and I’m proud to be able to support the most vulnerable people in our great City.”