National Volunteers Week is an opportunity for us to say thank you to the 400 volunteers we have dedicating their time to Crimestoppers, no matter how big or small their role might be.
But it is also an opportunity to provide some insight into how our volunteers work, what their impact on the charity is, and why they are so important in being that link between our staff and local communities.
Who better to provide that insight, than our Volunteers Manager, Greg Rees. Greg has been involved for over 20 years in the voluntary sector, working in supported social housing and for substance abuse agencies in South Wales, Bristol and the West Country. He’s passionate about the value that volunteers and volunteering brings to any organisation. Greg’s relaxation includes riding his motorbike around the twisted roads and beautiful mountains of Wales.
Q: What would you say to the current volunteers who dedicate their time to Crimestoppers as we mark National Volunteers Week?
A: I think the obvious is to say ‘thank you,’ because without their contributions, Crimestoppers wouldn’t be the sustained success it is. They are representatives of their communities and aim to give a voice of those communities, and in my time having been Volunteers Manager, I have seen some tremendous work carried out with staggering energy and commitment.
Q: Why are volunteers so important?
A: It would be easy to say that the existence of volunteers is to simply fundraise, but in having the coverage of people we do, we have faces and ambassadors of Crimestoppers, giving the charity a profile and bringing their expertise to the table. This helps to give local people an understanding that they can play a big part in keeping their community safe.
Q: How is volunteering for Crimestoppers different to more traditional charities?
A: It is so different because the area that Crimestoppers covers is so wide, from the criminal justice system to community safety. It is very varied and we have such a big area to cover – it makes for an interesting challenge for those that volunteer their time with us.
Q: What support do you give volunteers in your role?
A: They will receive the support needed, not just from myself, but from our regional staff as well. We’ll try to ensure that those that work with us are given projects that are of interest to them, that way they will know how much time they may need to commit.
Q: How important is National Volunteers Week?
A: Whether it’s an organisation like Crimestoppers, or any other that has volunteers, it would be foolish not to recognise the efforts they go to, especially when exclusively unpaid. They support our aims and objectives as a charity, and make a sizable contribution. It’s important to raise the flag during this week, but it’s important that volunteers feel appreciated all the time.
If you are interested in joining Crimestoppers as a volunteer, then please contact us our Volunteering Team.