CSV’s innovative work with volunteers with learning difficulties commended by Norman Lamb MP


Norman Lamb meeting Community Service Volunteers in North Walsham. Pictured are: Front row – Martin Adolpho (CSV Volunteer), Seoha Kim (CSV Volunteer Mentor), Nathan Thompson-Brown (CSV Volunteer) Back Row – Laura Veasey (CSV Volunteer), Sharon Hargreaves (CSV Volunteer), Yvonne Ogden (CSV Vocal Project Manager), Norman Lamb.

CSV welcomed MP Norman Lamb to its Norwich office last Friday to showcase CSV’s ground-breaking work with volunteers with learning difficulties.

CSV, the UK’s leading volunteering and learning charity, has supported adults with learning disabilities to volunteer in West Norfolk for 24 years.  A Big Lottery Reaching Communities grant given to CSV in January enabled the project to be extended across other areas of Norfolk, including the MP’s North Norfolk constituency.

Norman Lamb, Liberal Democrat MP, said: “The team is doing brilliant work. I really hope anyone who is interested in volunteering with CSV gets in touch and gets involved.”

CSV recruits local volunteer mentors who enable adults with learning disabilities to train and volunteer themselves in their communities, with some people eventually progressing into paid employment. The innovative volunteering model called Vocal led in part to CSV securing Department of Health Strategic Partner status this year.

Jemma Mindham, CSV’s regional manager said: “We were delighted to welcome local MP Norman Lamb last Friday to discuss the project and meet with our staff and volunteers from across Norfolk.

“He was very impressed with the level of commitment of the volunteers he spoke to, in particular one teenager who is not yet able to access adult social care, but is about to start volunteering and training at a community café in Dereham run by Norfolk County Council in partnership with CSV.”

“He was also very interested in CSV’s Full Time Volunteering gap year opportunities for young people which continue to be a huge success. We hope Mr Lamb can attend our Dereham café launch in July, and also volunteer with us at a Make a Difference project with Natural England in October.”

Anyone in Norfolk interested in becoming a volunteer mentor or anyone with a learning disability who would like support to volunteer or access employment can contact Yvonne Ogden at CSV for more information on 01366 385839 or yogden@csv.org.uk

CSV (Community Service Volunteers) is the UK’s leading volunteering and learning charity. In 2012/2013 we delivered 150,000 volunteering and 5,300 learning opportunities across the UK. Social justice is at the heart of what we do, empowering people to have a positive stake in society and tackle barriers to community participation through creating volunteering and learning opportunities. Find out more at www.csv.org.uk

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