This week International legal business DWF is running a number of events, initiatives and activities in support of National Volunteers' Week 2018, a UK-wide campaign run by The National Council for Voluntary Organisations which looks to celebrate the dedication of over 14 million people across the UK who regularly give up their time in support of others in their communities.
This year, the campaign celebrates the diverse range of volunteers in the UK, including trustees, campaigners, carers and fundraisers, and encourages people to engage with their community and drive their own social action to create a positive impact in society. Volunteering, which in total contributes £22.6bn to the UK economy each year, is a key part of life at DWF. In 2015 the business founded The DWF Foundation, to provide grants, resources and support to registered charities, with a particular focus on supporting homelessness, education, employability and health & wellbeing initiatives, and people from across DWF's offices regularly contribute time and effort to raising funds for the Foundation. DWF also runs an award-winning community education programme, 5 STAR Futures, to advance social mobility by equipping young people from areas of social disadvantage to develop the skills and confidence needed to succeed in the workplace, and is run entirely by DWF volunteers. The programme, which operates in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Newcastle and, most recently, Belfast, has enabled DWF to exceed its annual volunteering target of 30% whilst helping to stop social background predicting a young person's success.
Throughout Volunteers' Week, DWF aims to recognise the efforts and kindness of its people who regularly volunteer, whether that is through caring, in the community or via charity work.
As part of the campaign, the business has been supporting Single Homelessness Action in Durham (SHAID). This project is to help refurbish Hollyacres, a former care home which will provide 15 additional self-contained flats to support "early leavers" in Durham – young people who due to injuries, mental health issues or not reaching the required standard are forced to leave the armed services before completing the first 5 years of service. The business has also mentored a class of students at Liverpool's Broadgreen International School to help them express themselves and speak up about their goals. Other activities included people giving up their time to help Manchester's Seashell Trust, a charity for young people and adults with sensory impairment, profound and multiple learning difficulties, and profound communication difficulties.Ty Jones, Director of Corporate Social Responsibility and Engagement, said: "At DWF we believe safeguarding our long term future is about profit with purpose, recognising that the more successful we become, the greater impact we can have as a force for good. We also believe in the power of our people to make a difference by giving their time and talent to help those most in need. National Volunteers' Week helps us to recognise the valuable contribution our people make and say thank you to our people for their contribution to community prosperity. It's a chance for us to celebrate the best things about being a volunteer and to encourage more of our people to make a difference to the communities in which they live and work."