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Celebrating Volunteers week

03 June 2013

This week is Volunteers Week (June 1-7) a time to say thank you to those who give their time to help others. At Carers UK we rely on volunteers to help us help carers. Here are 10 examples of how volunteers are helping us make a difference to carers - 

1. Local branches
We have around 40 local branches of Carers UK - run by volunteers - that offer a range of support and services to carers. Whether it's a listening ear, days out or more practical support our branches are a lifeline.

2. Trustees
Carers UK is run by a board of volunteers - most of whom are carers and former carers - who oversee all aspects of the charities work. Find out more

3. Campaigners
Over the years many thousands of carers have given up their time to campaign for a better deal for carers. They've gone on marches and rallies, written letters, completed surveys, collected evidence, signed petitions, attended meetings, lobbied MPs and spoke up about how caring affects their lives. 

4. Fundraisers
Whether it's shaking a tin in a superrmarket, holding a jumble sale, running a marathon or jumping out of an aeroplane Carers UK is lucky to have people who will volunteer their time to help raise vital funds for the charity. 

5. Online forum 
Our online support forum is open 24/7 and many carers give their time to support others and offer help and advice. The forum is overseen by a team of volunteer moderators who ensure everything runs smoothly.

6. Telephone support
Caring can be isolating and frustrating. It can help to talk things over with someone who really understands the ups and downs of caring. We use carers and former carers as volunteers to deliver much needed emotional support to carers via the telephone. Read interviews with volunteers

7. Mentoring
Carers Together is volunteering project, funded by the Big Lottery Fund and delivered by TimeBank and Carers UK. It aims to offer carers the support of a mentor - someone who knows what they are going through and can listen and support them. Find out more

8. Press and Media case studies
Despite caring being commonplace, public understanding of “carers” as an issue is low. Our media volunteers tell their stories on TV, radio and in newspapers and in doing so they improve recognition of caring and Carers UK. 

9. GP ambassadors
Carers UK has recruited a team of 25 volunteer 'Carer Ambassadors' who are making valuable contributions to their local communities across England, drawing on their caring, work and volunteering experience to complement and contribute to local activities aimed at improving services for other carers. Read profiles of some of the carer ambassadors here

10. Office support 
We have a small but dedicated group of volunteers who offer support to our offices. They help with administration tasks like stuffing envelopes for mailings and helping deal with telephone messages. 

Read interviews and profiles of real life carer volunteers

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