Volunteer centre closer to reality

Victoria Foundation provides grant for Sooke centre

  • Dec. 7, 2011 9:00 a.m.

Funding for a Volunteer Centre in Sooke

The Victoria Foundation recently awarded a grant in the amount of $14,300 to the Sooke Region Volunteer Centre Committee.

These funds are for the development of a volunteer centre for the Sooke region, as well as exploring the possibility of extending services to the Westshore.

The funds, which will be administrated by Sooke Cooperative Association of Service Agencies (CASA), will be used to hire a part-time volunteer coordinator to work with local organizations and community groups who rely on volunteers to operate their services.

“We know from our 2010 community survey that most organizations in Sooke rely on word of mouth to recruit new volunteers,” said Jodie McDonald, Volunteer Centre Committee member.  “We also heard that 75 per cent of the organizations in the Sooke region need more volunteers.  We’re really excited about this next step forward in establishing a vibrant volunteer centre in our community.  The committee has been working hard for two years, and it’s wonderful that the Victoria Foundation has recognized the value of this project.  With this funding, we can take our work to the next level.”

The long range vision for the volunteer centre is to offer various volunteer services including; a job bank, training centre and resource library, in order to support local organizations and make it easier for them to recruit, train, manage, reward and appreciate their volunteers. The volunteer centre will be based in Sooke with services extending to the Westshore as relationships are built with that community.

“Many people don’t know that we already have a virtual volunteer centre operating online,” said Marlene Barry, chair of the Volunteer Centre Committee.  “Volunteer job listings are available on the Sooke Region Resources website, and we know that some organizations have already been successful connecting with new volunteers because of the website.”

The Sooke Region Resources website is at www.sookeregionresources.com. Any organization can post a listing for volunteers on the site by filling out the online form.

For more information about the volunteer centre, or to get involved, call Jodie McDonald at 250-580-2252.

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