Voluntary work demand surges in London

Some centres have run out of placements, says Greater London Volunteering

The average volunteer centre in London has seen a 90 per cent increase in the number of people inquiring about opportunities for placements in the past year, according to the umbrella body for volunteer centres in the capital.

Anne Layzell, development manager of the Experts in Volunteering project at Greater London Volunteering, said that demand for placements had tripled at some volunteer centres in the capital this year.

"Some volunteer centres have completely run out of placements," said Layzell. "This has a lot to do with increased unemployment as a result of the recession.

"But it is also because the Government has spent a lot of money on encouraging more people to volunteer, but not enough on building up the volunteering infrastructure."

Figures published earlier this year by volunteering charity YouthNet showed applications across the UK through volunteering website www.do-it.org had more than doubled in 2008 (Third Sector Online, 12 February).

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