Kent Coast Volunteering was launched today (Wed 13 Feb) at the Astor Theatre in Deal. The new service brings together volunteer centres with more than 100 years’ experience across three districts.

The launch was celebrated with Deputy Lord Lieutenant Paul Auston, representing the Lieutenancy of Kent, dignitaries, councillors and KCV staff and volunteers.

The new service is made up of Thanet Volunteer Bureau, Dover District Volunteering Centre and Shepway Volunteer Centre, which have been renamed the Thanet, Dover District and Folkestone and Hythe Hubs.

CEO Kerry Smith said: “This is about playing to our strengths and building on them to raise our profile and better position ourselves in a competitive funding environment. We want to maintain our role as the go to place for all things volunteering and we are committed to maintaining a local presence, so it's business as usual at each of our hubs."

Give A Bag Some Life – Good Neighbours Service

The launch included an exhibition called Give A Bag Some Life, a collection of bags decorated by clients and volunteers to be auctioned to support the charity’s befriending scheme, the Good Neighbours Service, which matches isolated older people with volunteers for activities including social visits, shopping and dog walking.

Our New Volunteer Connect Platform

Thanks to funding from KCC Councillors  Pauline Beresford, Rosalind Binks, Trevor Bond, Sue Chandler, Nigel Collor, Emma Dawson, Liz Hurst and Derek Murphy via the Combined Members Grant, our new Volunteer Connect Platform was also launched.

Across KCV more than 140 volunteer befrienders help to prevent loneliness, 130 volunteer drivers make 17000 journeys covering more than 400,000 miles each year and more than 700 charities have registered their volunteer opportunities.

Photo credit: David J Carr Photography