Celebrating the Importance of Volunteers
Volunteers are being celebrated by credit unions across Wales for the invaluable role they play in the development and success of the financial cooperatives.
As we mark Volunteers Week (June 1-7 2021) it is time to reflect on the massive contribution credit union volunteers have on the communities they support.
The ethical loans and savings providers rely on the voluntary support of many individuals who help with their decision-making and daily operation.
This has been particularly important during the upheaval of the past year with Covid-19 lockdown restrictions impacting on the delivery of services.
But thanks to volunteers, credit unions across Wales continue to provide a wide range of financial products to their members.
The 37th Volunteers’ Week is supported and celebrated by small grassroots organisations as well as larger, household-name charities, who together run hundreds of activities across the UK.
Did you know that:
- In 2018/19, 19.4million (36%) people volunteers through a group at least once a year and over 11.9 million (22%) of people did so at least once a month.
- The most common reason overall for volunteering is wanting to improve things or help people (42%)
- In 2019/20, there were around 163,000 voluntary organisations in the UK, most of which rely on volunteers.
- In 2017/18, the voluntary sector contributed £18.2billion to the UK economy. This is equivalent to about 0.9% of GDP.
- 67% of volunteers given their time to charities and community groups but many others also volunteer in the public and private sectors.
Credit unions across Wales continually encourage members to come forward and help make a genuine difference to the financial wellbeing of people within their own communities by volunteering.
By recognising their valuable and diverse contribution, volunteers can help steer the strategic development future of credit unions by standing as a voluntary board member in the AGM.
They can also ensure that the credit union is run in in the interests of all of its members. The range of board members in credit unions differ in walks of life, professions and experience.
This helps credit unions understand the needs of a wider range of people in the community and develop bespoke services that will benefit them.
As well as helping others, volunteering has been shown to improve volunteers’ wellbeing too.
Volunteering can help people gain valuable new skills and experiences which helps develop a CV and boost their job skills.
It also boosts confidence and helps people realise how valuable they are to an organisation through their voluntary work.