Many volunteers are, by their very definition, entirely selfless.
They do not give their time for any reason other than because they want to help others.
And most of them are the kind of people who go about their business without blowing their own trumpets or seeking praise for what they do, week in, week out.
To hear that Rowans Hospice in Purbrook alone relies on somewhere between 800 and 900 volunteers to provide its services is staggering.
When you think how many organisations there are in The News’s region alone that rely on volunteers, you come to realise just how important these people are to their communities.
Carol Milner from The Rowans hits the nail squarely on the head when she says: ‘Without the volunteers we wouldn’t be able to operate in the way we do. They give so much to us.’
Putting on a Christmas party for the volunteers is a nice touch.
But it’s not the reason all of these hundreds of people are willing to give their valuable time and effort.
They do it because they believe in the cause they are supporting, and it will be the same for everyone else happy to devote their spare time to volunteering.
There are plenty of good causes looking for people to help them – whether it be a charity, a sports club, or something that might draw on your area of professional expertise.
It’s not for everyone and it shouldn’t be used to cover what should be salaried positions, but volunteering is a worthwhile experience.
If you’re curious, but don’t know where to look, try ncvo.org.uk or do-it.org to give you some pointers. Or even here in The News where we often feature appeals for help.