A tea party was held at Gala Rugby Club to mark the 80th anniversary of one of the UK’s largest volunteering organisations, the Royal Voluntary Service (RVS).
RVS social centres and community transport provide support for Borders elderly and those in need. There are 15 social centres in the Borders and the community transport service runs across the region, provided by 150 volunteers.
Sabrina Edwards, RVS’s Borders service manager, said: “The party was a great way to say thank-you to all the wonderful volunteers who make the social centres and community transport possible, and help so many people in the local community. But it’s not just a one-way street. Evidence suggests volunteering is good for you, particularly in later life – helping us to stay active and connected with our communities.”
Borders MP John Lamont, who presented awards to long-serving volunteers, said: “The Scottish Borders has a significant elderly population and that is set to rise, meaning the demand of the type of support volunteers provide will also increase.
“It is my job as a politician to make sure that public services are sustainable and able to cope with this future demand. But without the tireless work of volunteers, all of this would be pointless.”
With John Lamont and Sabrina Edwards are recipients of long-service awards – Susan Donald (five years); Isobel Lafferty (5); Andy Moyes (5); Maria Noble (5); Jennifer Pearce (5); May Sinclair (5); Christeen Whitelaw (5); Sandy McLaren (5); Robert Fraser (10); Jean Oliver (10) and Elizabeth Darling (15).
z To find out more about volunteering with RVS, or to make a donation to support its work, visit www.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk