International Volunteer Day on 5 December was designated by the United Nations in 1985 as an international observance day to celebrate the power and potential of volunteering.
Here at Harmless, we are a Community and Voluntary service, so we truly understand the power that volunteering holds, bringing communities together and strengthens the bonds between people, working towards a common goal.
When Harmless launched The Tomorrow Project in 2012, it was brought about due to a need in the community. A small, rural village was in the grips of terrible grief following the loss of a number of people from the community to suicide, with nothing resembling adequate support in place the residents were left reeling from their losses without knowing where to turn.
Seeing and feeling the pain all around her, our CEO Caroline Harroe launched The Tomorrow Project, holding a meeting in a church hall to ask the community what it was that they needed, so the project could ensure that the bereaved were receiving the support they truly needed. This process, along with crowdsourcing the name of the project from the same community, means that The Tomorrow Project is fortunate to benefit from a close relationship with the people for whom it was established.
From this, we’ve have voluntary contributions from different people and groups in many different forms, from a bereaved family holding fundraising events that raised around £4,000, to sponsored runs and bike rides to telling the story of their experiences with Harmless/The Tomorrow Project and how they’ve moved from despair to hope, and all of these are equally important.
So we’d like to take the opportunity on this, the week of International Volunteers Day, to once again thank everyone who has given their time, energy and effort to help us to be able to reach further, build higher and support better those who in need. Those who have turned their own experiences into a source of strength and used that to help support others.
On behalf of all of us here at Harmless and the Tomorrow Project, thank you all.