Cork Volunteer Week 2020 is taking place from 18th to 24th May, organised by the Cork Volunteer Centre.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the work of volunteers and their importance to countless people has come to the fore. In Cork there have been 1000’s of offers of help and this has been highlighted in the work of the both the Cork City and Cork County Cvid-19 Community Response Forums. See HERE (City) and HERE (County).
Bishop Paul Colton has been taking part in both the City and County Covid-19 Community Response Forums, and Cork Diocesan Secretary, Billy Skuse, has been representing the Diocese on the County Community Support Group during the pandemic.
Hearing Julie Connolly, Manager of the Cork Volunteer Centre, speaking at the meetings of the Cork City Covid-19 Community Response Forum, Bishop Colton said that Cork Volunteer Week 2020 came to his notice, and he decided that it would be a good opportunity to highlight the work of volunteers in the Diocese of Cork, Cloyne and Ross, and to say ‘thank you’ to them for their work and for their partnership and engagement with a host of different voluntary groups around the city and county.
Volunteer Week has been postponed in other parts of the country but Cork, ever the rebel city and county, has not been deterred. Cork Volunteer Week will go ahead virtually.
Bishop Colton remarked that the work of the Church of Ireland, unlike some big churches in the Western world, depends hugely on the commitment of its own volunteers to do what needs to be done, and also he said:
We often forget too that many of the volunteers reaching out in the community and going into partnership with, and support for, other agencies are people who are members of their own churches. To many people, volunteering is their faith in action.
To mark Cork Volunteer Week next week, the Bishop is putting together ‘thank you’ videos (4 or 5 of them) to highlight the sort of work that volunteers are doing both in the Diocese, and in partnership with others in significant ways in the community.
With the help of the clergy of the Diocese, volunteers have been sending in clips about their work, not only in the Diocese, but also in organisations including the Samaritans, Meals on Wheels, Simon Community, the Coast Guard, RNLI, Mission to Seafarers, support for Syrian refugees who move to Ireland, sporting organisations, and food delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic … the list is wide and varied.
Keep an eye out for the ‘Thank you to our Volunteers’ videos next week.