Volunteers Week: Plaque scheme to mark 'permanent legacy' ofvolunteering

Plaques recognising the contribution of volunteers are to be put up at 650 locations throughout the UK.

The plaques, similar to those attached to homes once inhabited by famous people and those hung at venues that have benefited from National Lottery funding, will be unveiled at a number of buildings, including hospitals, homeless shelters and schools.

The plaques have been produced by the Year of the Volunteer programme to mark Volunteer Recognition Month, which begins today.

They will be made available to all voluntary organisations, which will then, in consultation with the public, decide where to place them.

A Year of the Volunteer spokesman said: "The plaques will be a permanent legacy to celebrate the work of the volunteer. The idea is that they will, we hope, inspire people to volunteer in the future."

He urged organisations to contact the Year of the Volunteer as soon as possible to secure their plaques, but stressed that there was only a limited number available - up to five for each organisation that wanted them.

Dame Elisabeth Hoodless, executive director of CSV, said: "The work of many volunteers goes on unrecognised, so the plaques give visibility to their involvement and reinforces the value of volunteering."

The Year of the Volunteer has arranged a number of other tributes for volunteers. These include 70,000 'Thank you' cards and 10,000 birthday cards, which organisations will be able to send to their volunteers.

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