“Volunteers don’t get paid, not because they’re worthless, but because they’re priceless.” – Sherry Anderson
Where would we be without our volunteers? Across the country hundreds of libraries are staffed by volunteers; they run police stations; deliver care for the elderly; pick up litter; offer help at tourist information centres and give support to vulnerable people. There would be no Frome Festival; no monthly markets; no local theatres; no sports clubs and definitely no community without volunteer help. Luckily, Frome is full of volunteering types and we are all the richer for their efforts.
According to recent statistics, about 27% of adults take part in voluntary activity, with regular volunteers giving on average 11.6 hours per month. The estimated value to the UK economy last year was in excess of £22bn. I like to think that volunteer levels in Frome are much higher than the national average. Where else can you find such a range of volunteer opportunities? Look at the amazing efforts of the Lions and Rotary clubs or the people who steward at festival events. That’s a lot of generous local people.
Understandably, the majority of volunteer activity is among our older residents. I have met some who have each given in excess of thirty or forty years’ service to their chosen organisations. “Volunteers are never lonely, stay healthy, gain skills and just generally enjoy life,” said one volunteer for Frome Community Cars. F.C.C. currently have about 20 volunteer drivers but are always looking for more.
Perhaps you would like to give something back to Frome and the people who live here. Frome Town Council funds Volunteer Frome, which benefits local people and organisations by improving access to volunteering in the town. If you would like to volunteer but don’t know how to, you can register for free at https://volunteerfrome.org/