Volunteering: Scotlandís Colleges are Getting Ready

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Volunteering: Scotlandís Colleges are Getting Ready

Post  Admin on Wed Mar 19, 2008 2:31 am

10 March 2008

Minister for Children and Early Years, Adam Ingram addressed an audience of learners, college personnel and representatives from the volunteering sector today at the first national event to raise awareness of the difference volunteering can make to learners and colleges.

It comes as The Scottish Government commits £93.6 million over the next three years to the third sector.

The Volunteering conference, organised by the ĎDeveloping Volunteering in Scotland's Colleges Group' promoted the benefits of volunteering to Scotland's colleges and their 500,000 students.

This successful event explored the policy agendas that promote volunteering and the ways in which volunteering amongst students can help colleges meet their aims and objectives with regard to student retention, citizenship, employability and skills development.

Delegates also heard how engaging in volunteering activities can help learners develop essential skills and core skills, increase their confidence and enhance their CVs as well as make a difference to the lives of others, to communities or to the environment. Ways in which the volunteering infrastructure in Scotland can help colleges in developing a culture of volunteering and models of student volunteering that are developing in colleges was also show cased.

The college sector will use the conference to plan the way forward in promoting student volunteering and the learning to be gained from it.

The conference heard first hand from learners about the ways volunteering has benefited their learning, personal development, confidence and self-esteem - enhancing their lives and helping the development of skills to equip them for the future.

Adam Ingram, Minister for Children and Early Years, said "This Government is very much aware of the benefits volunteering brings not only to individuals but to communities right across the country. It helps develop strong characters, strong communities and ultimately contributes to a stronger and more successful Scotland."

"That's one of the reasons we've committed unprecedented levels of financial support to the third sector - with over £93 million being available over the next three years."

"Scots have always had a strong sense of community and that's clearly reflected by the volunteers here today."

"I very much welcome the proposals to develop volunteering in our colleges and I'm sure that the very positive experiences of these students will encourage many more to make the most of volunteering opportunities available."


Caitlin McIlroy, Student President, Angus College said "I have found that volunteering offers a diverse investment of my time to acquire new skills and develop my existing ones in a measurable way. Volunteering is how I contribute to my community and the volunteering that I do helps me move toward my ultimate goal."

John Burt, Chair of the Developing Volunteering in Scotland's Colleges Group said "It has been excellent to have the support of The Scottish Government minister at this important inaugural conference to give him the opportunity to speak directly with students and to address both the FE and the Volunteering Sectors, providing encouragement to the colleges in delivery of this important agenda."

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