Volunteers Week: Hard-working community stalwart loves helping people

Councillor has been giving her time to groups in Lyme for more than 30 years

This week is Volunteers Week and we are highlighting the important role volunteers play in our communities.

Volunteers Week: Hard-working community stalwart loves helping people

MICHAELA Ellis has been volunteering in Lyme Regis for 30 years and says she does it because she loves helping people.

Most recently she has combined being a town councillor with volunteering for Lyme Regis Community Support, collecting and delivering prescriptions and doing shopping runs for the elderly and vulnerable who have been shielding.

“When the word went round that the group was thinking about doing this it was just a no-brainer for me to volunteer my services because it is such a wonderful idea,” she said.

“With everyone working together it was really good because if somebody couldn’t do something, somebody else jumped in.”

She said the human contact for the people she ran errands for was just as important as the errands themselves. “Some of the people are on their own and it’s been nice for them to see a friendly face. It has made them feel involved with what’s going on and made sure they get what they need without putting themselves at risk,” she said.

She has also been helping at the foodbank, is a school governor, caretaker at the town’s Woodmead Halls and chairman of the town’s bingo association.

“I really like being involved,” she said. “With the bingo, it’s good to see people getting together. We have people saying ‘I don’t actually like bingo but it’s the only night I get oiut to see people’.”

Some of the people are on their own and it’s been nice for them to see a friendly face

She said she would encourage anyone to volunteer. “You get someone out of it yourself, I get a warm fuzzy feeling because I’ve gone and helped someone instead of plodding on with my life,” she said.

Volunteers’ Week is supported and celebrated by small grassroots organisations as well as larger, household-name charities, who together run hundreds of activities across the UK. These activities showcase and celebrate volunteers and the contribution volunteering makes in our communities.

Volunteers’ Week 2021 is a time to say thanks. It goes without saying that volunteers have played a key role in the pandemic response. During an exceptionally difficult year, people from all walks of life around the UK have taken the time to volunteer and make a huge difference to their communities – just as they do every year. This is a time for us to come together and thank all volunteers for their invaluable contribution.

This 37th annual Volunteers’ Week is taking place during the #MonthofCommunity. Running throughout June, #MonthOfCommunity brings together organisations with a range of events in order to encourage us all to think about and join in with activities happening in our local communities.