After some interesting introductory comments by The Lord Mayor, past and present volunteers spoke about the benefits that volunteering has brought to them as individuals, including the development new skills and experiences which have helped them move onwards in their life journey. Speakers from Job Centre Plus and Westminster Works talked about the importance of volunteering in developing employability skills and experience, and an HR professional from SThree, a multinational recruitment consultancy, talked about the importance of volunteering experience on CVs and why the company encourages its staff to take part in volunteering.
Additionally, two films about the benefits of volunteering were shown, both featuring volunteers talking about their experiences. One of these was made especially for the event by three local volunteers.
By the end of the evening everybody had a real sense of the value that volunteering can bring to individuals, especially through the stories of volunteers who had overcome issues such as gang crime, unemployment, isolation and immigration by getting involved in voluntary work which in many cases has led on to employment.
Guests were encouraged to find out more about volunteering and there were stands with information about services for the public and voluntary sector organisations in Westminster manned by staff from Volunteer Centre Westminster and Voluntary Action Westminster.