Pop-up event in Fareham matches volunteers with opportunities

SHOPPERS had the chance to learn more about volunteering opportunities at a pop-up event.

Thursday, 23rd March 2017, 5:55 am
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 11:02 am
Events organiser Justin Heath and volunteer Jo Isgar from The Haven. Picture: Sarah Standing (170409-4624)

Spring Into Action was held yesterday at Fareham Shopping Centre to showcase a wide range of opportunities and give information about different businesses, charities and organisations that are looking for people to get involved with them.

It took place outside Debenhams and was organised by charity One Community.

Hayley Hamlett, a development worker at One Community, said: ‘We look after people who want to volunteer but are not quite sure of what they want to do.

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Events organiser Justin Heath and volunteer Jo Isgar from The Haven. Picture: Sarah Standing (170409-4624)

‘They tell me their interests, their availability, where they want to go with their volunteering and how they want to engage with their community – then we support them on their journey.

‘We also look after charities –small or large – as long as they are based in Fareham. We support them by getting funding for items to increase their services such as equipment. We also engage with different charities and services at our events. Today is about getting all sorts of charities – local and national – together to network but also to celebrate what they do.

‘But also to get the general public involved with what they do.’

The event saw multiple stalls, manned by existing volunteers, giving out information on the work they do.

Shops manager Gayle Nash, left, and director Chris Edwards of The Solent Diabetes Association in Fareham and Gosport. Picture: Sarah Standing (170409-4642)

One of those charities was the Solent Diabetes Association. It has two charity shops – one in Fareham and one in Gosport.

Chris Edwards, a volunteer, said: ‘It is very important, an event like this, because our shops are run by volunteers. We desperately need volunteers all the time.’

Other charities involved with the day and also on the look-out for help included; Marvels and Meltdowns, Fareport Talking News, the Rainbow Centre, Homestart, CAB, We can Read, Breast Cancer Haven, Hampshire Conservation, PCaSO, Communicare, Autism Hampshire and Step by Step.

Abigail Rowlinson, a student who was visiting the event, said: ‘Charity and voluntary work, especially in Hampshire, is great as it helps my little brother who is autistic. Also my sister volunteers for a charity. Having these stalls is helpful. I’d like more people to be more aware of the charities.’

Events organiser Justin Heath and volunteer Jo Isgar from The Haven. Picture: Sarah Standing (170409-4624)

Another person at the day, Donna Lloyd-Henry, said: ‘There’s something for everybody. There’s not enough money for everybody and people need help.’

One Community will be hosting another showcase on July 1 at the Ferneham Hall, Fareham from 10am to 2pm. For more email [email protected] or call (023) 8090 2400.

Shops manager Gayle Nash, left, and director Chris Edwards of The Solent Diabetes Association in Fareham and Gosport. Picture: Sarah Standing (170409-4642)