Sep 15 2011

Interim body in place to support Harrow’s voluntary sector

An interim service to support Harrow’s voluntary and community organisations will be launched next week, Harrow Council has announced.

The new service will be in place until March 2012 to help Harrow ‘s voluntary sector groups strengthen their organisations, win funding and recruit volunteers. In partnership with the Council and voluntary sector representatives it will also consult the voluntary groups on what they would like to see provided as a permanent replacement.

The interim service will fill the void left by the official closure of the Harrow Association of Voluntary Services (HAVS) announced in March this year. It will operate out of the former HAVS premises in Pinner Road for two days a week.

An open day will be held at the Pinner Road offices on Wednesday 21st September from 1pm – 4pm, where representatives from the voluntary sector can meet staff and find out what help is available.

The interim service will be provided by a consortium of the Councils for Voluntary Service (CVSs) in Hillingdon, Ealing and Hammersmith. Harrow Council funding will be used to pay for the service.

The body will also run training programmes and workshops based on demand from the local voluntary sector and help those organisations develop their IT.

Cllr David Perry, portfolio holder for community and cultural services on Harrow Council, said:

“Voluntary groups do an outstanding job in communities across Harrow , improving the quality of life of so many of our residents.

“The Council wants to do everything it can to help the thriving voluntary sector support themselves and that includes putting in place a service where these groups can turn to for help and advice.

“This interim arrangement will provide essential support services as the sector develops a long-term solution. The three CVS organisations bring a wealth of expertise and we are grateful for their support at this time.”

Ted Hill, Chief Executive of Hillingdon CVS, said:

“We are pleased to offer our support to Harrow’s community and voluntary groups. We will work closely with local organisations and the Council to create a permanent replacement in the borough.

“I urge representatives from the voluntary sector to come to the open day on Thursday, say hello and find out about the range of support we will be offering.”

For information on the Open Day event please contact Kashmir Takhar at Harrow Council on 020 8420 9331 or Carmel Miedziolka at The Harrow Women’s Centre on 0771 889 7129.

Source: Harrow Council

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