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Charity Highlights 12 Ways to Volunteer in the Countdown to Christmas

Diverse Abilities Plus, based in Dorset, is urging local people to give back to the community this Christmas and support its ’12 Days of Christmas Volunteering’ initiative.

 
 
12 Days of Christmas Volunteering
PRLog - Dec. 1, 2011 - POOLE, U.K. -- Diverse Abilities Plus, the only charity in Dorset that provides a lifetime of support for children and adults with profound physical and learning disabilities across the county, is urging local people to give back to the community this Christmas and support its ’12 Days of Christmas Volunteering’ initiative.

The ’12 Days of Christmas Volunteering’ campaign aims to demonstrate the many and varied ways that local people can get involved with the charity over the festive period and into 2012. Giving, especially in this economic climate, is not just about money but also about a potentially more valuable commodity – time.

The charity is working hard to build up its volunteer team ready for the year ahead. Diverse Abilities Plus is aiming to hit a target of 100 volunteers by the end of 2012 but still has a long way to go to achieve this. Without volunteers Diverse Abilities Plus would not be able to continue providing the level of care that it does to families in Dorset.

Volunteering opportunities with Diverse Abilities Plus are varied and can include helping organise and attend awareness raising events; administration work; graphic design; filmmaking; undertaking and planning leisure activities for the children and adults; teaching as well as gardening and decorating.

Ashley Weedon, Community Fundraiser at Diverse Abilities Plus, said: “It is very important to us to ensure that all our Volunteers feel valued as they are an integral part of the Diverse Abilities Plus family. At Christmas time, we like to make it extra special for the children and adults that attend the services, and volunteers can help us to do this. We are pleased to be able to offer volunteers the chance to develop their skills and experience, meet new people, enhance their CV’s and hopefully have some fun at our social events.”

Wendy Barfoot, the daughter of Phyllis Edwards – the founder of Diverse Abilities Plus, regularly volunteers for the charity with her partner, Eric Prince. Both take part in painting, gardening and help at events for the charity. Wendy said: “We have gained so much from volunteering for Diverse Abilities Plus. Everyone seems to be genuinely grateful for what we do, and it is great to see the results of our efforts – that is a reward in itself.”

To view examples of some of the volunteer roles at Diverse Abilities Plus, see personal interviews with 12 different volunteers or if you would like to get involved visit www.diverseabilitiesplus.org.uk/support-us/12days or telephone 01202 718266.

You can also visit the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/diverseabilitiesplus and follow the charity on Twitter at www.twitter.com/DiverseAbility

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Editors Notes
Diverse Abilities Plus is a charity that has been supporting children and adults with Cerebral Palsy and associated disabilities working in the County of Dorset, England for 55 years. The charity provides a range of assistance, support and education services for young people aged two to 19, adults and families. Services include:
•   Langside School – independent, non maintained specialist day school for children and young people from the age of two to 19 years who have PMLD (profound and multiple learning disabilities). It’s one of only 19 similar SEN (special education needs) schools in the UK.
•   Smithers – provides overnight and day short breaks. Short breaks help families manage the challenges of providing full time care for their child. A visit can be during the day or a ‘sleep over’ allowing the child to make and meet friends and relax and enjoy themselves.
•   Shapes – provides home support (domiciliary care) for children and young people aged between two and 18 with individually tailored programs.
•   Project My Time – provides child-led holiday activities that give young people with disabilities the same leisure and fun opportunities that their peers enjoy.
•   Barnabas – a well equipped day setting for adults. Adults can learn new skills and enjoy a wide range of experiences.
•   Supported living – this service is for people who live in their own home but may need up to 24/7 support.
•   Disability Wessex - offers assistance with disability benefits for people with disabilities or chronic and acute health conditions and their families or carers, as well as the parents of disabled children.
•   Play Opportunities - supports families with disabled children to have a chance to get out and enjoy themselves with other families in similar situations.
•   Awesome Days and Awesome Nights – A youth group, set up and run by young people of all abilities, aged between 13 - 19 years.
•   Face 2 Face – a free and confidential network of trained volunteer befrienders, who support parents to make positive adjustments to the news that their child has a disability or additional need. Every Face2Face befriender is a parent whose own child has a disability. They know what it's like to cope with a new diagnosis and can offer support parent to parent.

The charity was founded in 1955 by Mrs Phyllis Edwards who formed a group of parents intent on providing better opportunities for their children with physical and learning disabilities.

Visit Diverse Abilities Plus Facebook page at www.facebook.com/diverseabilitiesplus and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/DiverseAbility

For more information
Contact: Zoe Hiljemark, PR Account Director / Jenny Pearce, Senior PR Account Executive
E-mail: zoe@marketing-matters.co.uk / jenny@marketing-matters.co.uk
Tel: +44 (0) 1202 777111 / +44 (0) 7770 924439
Address: Marketing Matters, Unit C, Acorn Business Park, Ling Road, Poole, Dorset, UK, BH12 4NZ

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Marketing Matters is an integrated creative, digital and PR agency based in Poole, Dorset. We work across a range of sectors, specialising in marine, property, charity and B2B clients on a national and international level.

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