14 June 2018

Community Comes Together for Volunteers’ Week!

Date: 14th June 2018
Subject: Community Comes Together for Volunteers’ Week!

Whoever said community spirit was dead! On Friday 8th June over forty volunteers came together to support a Wickham community initiative called ‘The Project’. As part of the National Volunteers’ Week celebrations, where thousands of community projects across the UK promote volunteering, the volunteers worked together to create a community garden from scratch.

The Project is an initiative which collects food that is past its sell by date from large supermarkets, a selection of which was available on the volunteering day. It then opens to the local community giving them a chance to use that food on a donation or skills swap basis. Sue Cooper from The Project says “by building a community garden, where local residents can come and help maintain the vegetable patches, we will be able to extend our reach. The vegetables grown will then be available to everyone in the local area. I would like to thank everyone who got involved to support our exciting new project”.

The range of tasks covered by the volunteers included clearing turf, building a raised bed, laying a patio, planting vegetables, cutting back hedges and painting a storage container. Janet Duggan, Volunteer Service Manager for Community First said “the day was a great success where volunteers came from a range of businesses and local residents, staff from Barclays Bank in Fareham and students from Peter Symonds College, Winchester. The event was also supported by MPs George Hollingbery (Meon Valley) and Suella Braverman (Fareham) and children from the local school Wickham Primary, making it a real social action initiative”.

Over half of the volunteers were from businesses and Ian Jarvis from Barclays Fareham said “It’s been great to get involved in the local community and give something back, especially during Volunteers’ Week. I would encourage businesses to follow suit and help local community initiatives.”

George Hollingbery, MP for Meon Valley went on to say “Great to see what’s going on in my constituency and was very impressed with how everyone got on with the tasks and produced a community garden for the people of Wickham”.

The event was supported by a number of local businesses donating a wide range of materials for the event. We would like to thank the following for their support: Meon Valley Butchers, The Co-op (Wickham), One Stop (Wickham), The Village Bakery, Pages of Wickham, Mole Country Stores (Wickham), Warwicks of Wickham, ETyres, Barclays Bank (Fareham), Peter Symonds College Students, The Dower House Nursing Home (Winchester), Aura Technology, Training for Life, TJ Waste & Recycling, Ranger Days, Byrne Runciman Estate Agents, Village Green, Radian Housing, The Wickham Centre and Community First.

If you would like to find out more about The Project email Sue Cooper – suez04@hotmail.co.uk. To find out how you can get involved in volunteering visit www.volunteerwessex.org or email Julie.eden@cfirst.org.uk.

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