Merger boost for volunteers

PUBLISHED: 12:13 16 November 2006 | UPDATED: 13:36 04 May 2010

THE proposed merger of two Ely-based organisations will see the creation of a new, distinctive, comprehensive and wide-ranging service provider for community and voluntary groups in East Cambridgeshire. Ely and District Volunteer Centre and East Cambridge

THE proposed merger of two Ely-based organisations will see the creation of a new, distinctive, comprehensive and wide-ranging service provider for community and voluntary groups in East Cambridgeshire.

Ely and District Volunteer Centre and East Cambridgeshire Council for Voluntary Service, both based in Forehill, are planning to merge from April 2007 to form East Cambs Voluntary and Community Action.

Robert Bullen, chairman of the Volunteer Centre, and Roy Grant, chairman of the CVS, say the new organisation is intended to be a one-stop shop for all voluntary and community groups seeking help.

People who want to volunteer or who are looking for advice about setting up a charitable group will also be able to go in and get advice or be directed to specialist advisers.

Ely and District Volunteer Centre has been based in Forehill for 10 years. Earlier this year, it hosted a successful speed matching event at The Maltings to bring together groups looking for volunteers and people looking for opportunities to give something to their communities.

Centre manager Avril Hayter-Smith is also Ely's official town crier.

East Cambridgeshire Council for Voluntary Service has been in adjacent offices to the Volunteer Centre since 2004 and is primarily an organisation that supports community and charitable groups to develop their operational structure. It is the representational body for local groups at district and county level and is "the voice" of the sector when it comes to wider strategic planning at these levels.

An Extraordinary General Meeting of Ely and District Volunteer Centre will take place today (Thursday) in the meeting room at Ely Library at midday when voting to formally agree the merger will take place. This will be followed at 12.45pm by the East Cambs Council for Voluntary Service annual meeting, during which voting on a merger resolution and election of Trustees will take place.

INFO: Contact Avril Hayter-Smith on 01353 666556 or Siobhan Branagh on 01353 666166 for more information.

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