- Do you coach your kids’ football team every Saturday?
- Are you a student doing your “volunteering” towards your Duke of Edinburgh award?
- Have you marshalled at one sports event to get a free entry at another?
- Are you a parent listening to children read at your own child’s school?
- Have you joined a neighbourhood working party to clear a pond or maintain a local wild space?
If so, do you think of yourself as a volunteer? I do. But the government and the policy makers might not be counting you or me. I think there is a lot of community volunteering going on – the parents, the students, the local groups – who never make it into official “volunteer” statistics. We don’t make it into the statistics because we are not recruited through agencies or charities.
Interestingly, the Third Sector Research Centre thinks so too with Hidden in the community: micro-mapping the big society They have been exploring the north-west looking for community organisations and activities and they concluded that their “findings offer a glimpse into the huge level of activity … that is invisible to policymakers.”
We don’t want to be invisible! If you are doing any type of volunteering, this blog is for you.
Do you do any “invisible” volunteering? Please leave a comment and let me know.