Communities Secretary backs Stirling’s European Volunteering Capital bid

27th September 2018:  

The city has been presented with its candidacy certificate as it aims to be named European Volunteering Capital 2020

Stirling’s bid to be named the European Volunteering Capital has been backed by the Scottish Government.

Communities secretary Aileen Campbell has given her support to the bid to be named the centre of volunteering in 2020.

If Stirling is successful, Scotland will be home to a European Volunteering Capital for the first time. Previous winners include Barcelona, Lisbon and London.

Stirling Council, Volunteer Scotland and Stirlingshire Voluntary Enterprise are leading the bid.

Their aim is for Stirling to be the first area in Scotland where it’s the norm to volunteer, setting an ambitious target of increasing volunteering participation rates to 50%. Over a third of local people in Stirlingshire volunteer at present.

Campbell said:

“It is well known that volunteering brings enormous benefits to people and communities and also to the volunteers themselves. I want us to create a society where volunteering is the norm – where opportunity or expectation is not limited by upbringing or social circumstances.

That’s why I’m delighted to formally endorse Stirling’s bid for European Volunteering Capital 2020.  Being declared a candidate city is a wonderful testament to all those volunteers who enrich the lives of our communities.

It is also an opportunity for us to show the judges that we have the potential to do much more – to inspire volunteers across the continent and encourage even more people to get involved.”

Campbell was speaking at Volunteer Scotland’s Young People, Volunteering and Inclusion event at the Tolbooth, which brought the curtain down on Stirling’s Festival of Volunteering.

At the closing ceremony of the week-long festival, Stirling was presented with its candidacy certificate for its bid.

Councillor Chris Kane, convener of the community planning and regeneration committee at Stirling Council, said:

“Today was another milestone in our ambitious bid to become the first Scottish city to become European Volunteering Capital.

It has been fantastic to see how the people of Stirling have already rallied to the cause. We have had a superb response from organisations so far and we would love more to get on board.

We want as many people to get involved over the coming months as the bid moves forward and nothing beats the joy you get from helping others through volunteering.”

By Gareth Jones, Third Force News, 27th Sept 2018: