Congratulations to Emmaus Dover’s team of outreach volunteers who have been shortlisted for the Excellence in Volunteering Awards Folkestone and Hythe District.

The Folkestone and Hythe District Awards recognise community heroes who give their time and skills to do good in the local area.

The winners will be announced at a special ceremony at The Quarterhouse in Folkestone during Volunteers Week on Thursday 6 June 2024.

Volunteers from Emmaus Dover were nominated for their weekly wellbeing runs to help people who are rough sleeping. People supported by the homelessness charity and staff travel to Folkestone each week to distribute essentials and advice. The team packs rolls, soup, tea, coffee, sleeping bags, tents and distribute clothing.

Cllr Mike Blakemore, Folkestone & Hythe District Council’s Cabinet Member for Community and Collaboration, who had the idea for the awards, said: “For many volunteers the satisfaction of making a difference to others’ lives is reward enough but these awards will shine a spotlight on a few of those whose contribution deserves particular recognition.

“We hope the awards will also encourage others to consider following our winners’ lead, especially when they hear just how much volunteers gain from the experience.”

The scheme run by Kent Coast Volunteering on behalf of Folkestone & Hythe District Council aims to raise the profile of volunteering and its benefits at a time when a national shortage of volunteers is making it difficult for charities and community groups to deliver their services.

Emma Cooney, Charity Manager at Kent Coast Volunteering (KCV), which helps people find volunteering opportunities, said: “We love this opportunity provided by Folkestone & Hythe District Council to celebrate people volunteering in our community.”

She added there was plenty of anecdotal evidence volunteering was good for your health, happiness and wellbeing – if you find the right fit.

Other benefits include enjoyment, experience for your CV, learning additional skills, meeting new people, contributing to a charity or cause you believe in, being part of something bigger than yourself and finding a sense of personal achievement.

There are many ways you can support Emmaus Dover, to find out all about them visit our Support Us page here.