Volunteers’ Week was last week and so I have chosen two organisations I am proud to be associated with.
Fareham Senior Citizens’ Lunch Club, this autumn, will be celebrating 61 years of providing lunch and very welcome company every Monday for up to 50 people who would otherwise be alone.
Thirty-eight volunteers, some of whom are part of a rota, cook the much appreciated two-course lunch.
Some are regular hosts and hostesses who welcome guests and give them tea or coffee on arrival, serve lunch and post lunch tea or coffee.
Volunteers who wash up or set tables and chairs, returning them to storage afterwards, are also very important!
Some guests make their own way, but the majority are collected from 10.30am onwards, by volunteer drivers such as myself, who also return them to their homes from around 2pm.
The Community Bus is available for those who are unable to travel by car.
The Friday Night Club, which began as a voluntary group in 2004, is still run by volunteers but became a Community Interest Charity in early 2017.
Its aim is to improve the wellbeing of adults with learning disabilities and/or mental health issues through activities that help them feel valued, and be valued within their community.
Based at Wallington Village Hall, around 100 people attend one or more of the activities offered.
These include monthly Friday night disco and band nights, weekly Monday afternoon activities including music, dance, arts and crafts, indoor sports and catering demonstrations.
Most exciting of all are the weekly Tuesday afternoons at the Marwell Activity Centre, which include archery and thrilling off-roading being driven by an instructor.
I can thoroughly recommend the twice monthly three-course lunches, with tea or coffee for the bargain price of £5, provided by the Lifestyles Catering Group.