Last Updated: 18 October 2010
Created: 18 October 2010
Local Building Society Nationwide wants to hear from local charities and volunteer groups that need support
Swindon-based Nationwide Building Society has today launched a new employee volunteering programme - Nationwide Volunteers - which offers employees two days paid leave per year to dedicate to volunteering activities. Swindon local MPs, Justin Tomlinson and Rob Buckland along with Edie Fassnidge, from Volunteering England, attended the launch which took place at the organisation’s headquarters on Pipers Way. Employees are able to select a cause of their own choice or can take up opportunities available through Nationwide’s local or national charity partners. The Society would like to hear from you if you work for a charity or volunteer group that could benefit from this help.
Nationwide has seen an increase in demand for support from the charitable sector and community volunteer groups and ‘Nationwide Volunteers’ forms part of the organisation’s commitment to local communities across the country. The level of volunteer support available can range from regular (e.g. administration, conservation, youth work) or challenge (e.g. one-off practical tasks as a group) volunteering through to knowledge and skills-based assistance, using business skills such as finance, marketing or IT. Employees could also serve on the managing bodies of voluntary organisations and schools as a trustee or governor. Employees have been asked to pledge their support for the programme which helps them to find organisations that are in need of the skills they possess.
Nationwide’s divisional director, corporate affairs, Maxine Taylor, said: “Supporting our local communities is at the centre of Nationwide’s ethos as a mutual organisation and ‘Nationwide Volunteers’ is a natural extension of our Corporate Responsibility programme. Employee volunteering can make a real difference to the community sector, particularly within the context of this challenging economic climate. Our talented people giving their time and expertise can be the most effective donation of all.”
The Nationwide Foundation, the grant-making charity funded by Nationwide, has been working with Volunteering England on a project to develop skills-based employer supported volunteering. The work carried out by Volunteering England was funded by the Foundation and investigated why businesses and charities, which have so much to offer one another for mutual gain, did not access these benefits as much as they could, and what could be done to forge greater links. Pilot projects were carried out across the UK to establish local networks which would encourage higher levels of participation from employers.
Edie Fassnidge, Volunteering England said: “The benefits of skills-based employer supported volunteering far exceed it being a ‘good thing to do’ and there is a strong business case for all parties to get involved. For employees there are opportunities to share and develop their skills and learn more about local issues. For employers, it is a demonstrable way of reaching out and connecting with their local community and leads to a more motivated and skilled workforce. Charities and community groups benefit from improved services and infrastructure and an enhanced profile. Importantly, it can play a key role in connecting communities through cross-sector volunteering partnerships. “
Justin Tomlinson MP, "I was delighted to attend and support the launch of this fantastic scheme. Nationwide employees can and will make a real difference to our community and I am sure local organisations will be keen to attract their employees energy, enthusiasm and experience."
Launches also took place at Nationwide’s administration centres in Northampton and Bournemouth and will roll out across the country in November through the Society’s branch network.
You can tell Nationwide about a charity, organisation or volunteer group in your community that may need additional volunteers by visiting www.nationwide-members.co.ukand downloading the online form.