In 2022, Community First Oxfordshire and Oxfordshire Community and Voluntary Action set out to understand the experience of volunteering in Oxfordshire, how volunteering has been changed and shaped by recent events, and what partners, systems, stakeholders and citizens need to do together to ensure a thriving, inclusive, sustainable future for volunteering in Oxfordshire.
The publication (in July 2023) of our Vision for Volunteering is timely, coinciding with Oxfordshire County Council’s Voluntary and Community Sector Strategy and the national Vision for Volunteering.
By volunteering we mean all kinds of unpaid support offered by people in their communities. That includes volunteering with community groups, registered charities, mutual aid groups, faith groups, lunch clubs, community sports teams, environmental groups and more. It also includes things like helping neighbours who are struggling, serving on the parish council, organising a street event, volunteering for a PTA, running a neighbourhood WhatsApp or Facebook group, helping produce a local community publication, running a local community campaign, or raising funds for a local cause.
We wanted to hear from as many people as possible and particularly from groups which are doing new and different things, or operating in a new way, or who have traditionally been overlooked. Over 350 people from across Oxfordshire, volunteering with more than 470 different organisations, contributed information for our Vision for Volunteering.
People from across Oxfordshire answered the survey. They volunteer in organisations operating in our districts, in the wider region, nationally and internationally.
Working in partnership with Oxfordshire’s diverse community and voluntary sector, and with our partners across the county, we will develop an action plan to support the realisation of the Oxfordshire Vision for Volunteering.
Help us create a Vision for Volunteering in Oxfordshire – interview with our Vision for Volunteering Officer, Sophie Jaquet Bennett