Increased Volunteering During The Pandemic
02 July, 2020
Many charities have been suffering a loss of income due to the recent pandemic, and many physical and face-to-face volunteering projects and services have had to temporarily halt, however this has not stopped many others pulling together to adapt to the situation.
Reach Volunteering is a charity that connects volunteers who have at least three years’ experience in their field and one that we have supported through our grant-making for a number of years. Through Reach Volunteering, they have recorded an average of 240 new applicants weekly resulting in around 21,000 new people registering between April and May to become volunteers, compared to the 750 that registered in the same period last year. This is around three times as many.
Although Reach has experienced a surge in volunteering, it has also received a high number of charities seeking advice in transferring their usual face-to-face services to be accessible online. Without these services, many people who use these charities would be without the necessary help they need and would struggle, this meant that moving to a digital platform was of high importance for many organisations.
Much of the MCT’s work is in recognising dedicated volunteers through annual Marsh Awards in collaboration with our Partners to celebrate the amazing work individuals and groups have achieved. The pandemic has meant adjustment for the MCT as rules restricted the usual meetings to discuss Award plans but like many other businesses and charities the use of online video call rather than meeting has allowed the MCT to stay in close contact with our partners. This allowed us to proceed with some Award Partners in holding virtual judging meetings to choose the winners of this year’s Awards. Even though physical Awards Presentation Events have been cancelled or potentially postponed until further notice, the MCT believes it is still important to acknowledge those who have given a lot to their charity. The pandemic will also show Award Partners that they are still committed to the cause and are willing to adjust, potentially meaning that we will receive an abundance of high-quality nominations in the future.