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Celebrating 40 Years of Inspirational Volunteering

Originally starting life as Carrick Volunteer Bureau back in 1978, Volunteer Cornwall has grown from humble beginnings. Founded by the community to address a perceived lack of transport options, its early focus was on transport and limited volunteering opportunities in and around the Truro area.

It wasn’t until the 1990’s that it became the county-wide organisation that it is today. As Cornwall Centre for Volunteers, it ran a county-wide transport scheme, provided support to help jobless people back to work and operated Volunteer Bureaux in 5 of the 6 District Council areas.

In 1998, CCFV was awarded the contract by The Department of Employment to deliver the Voluntary Option of New Deal for 18-24 year-olds. After a year of success, the Centre gained the contract for both the New Deal 25+ and Millennium Volunteers.

Fast forward to 2005 and The Year Of The Volunteer! This was an exciting time for volunteering in the county with money to spend on promoting volunteering, a “Make a Difference Fair” launched by local MP, Julia Goldsworthy at the Carn Brea Leisure Centre attracting more than 100 exhibitors and an elaborate finale to The Year Of The Volunteer with 300 volunteers from across Cornwall taking to the ice at The Eden Project to celebrate.

In April 2009 we underwent a re-branding to the now-familiar Volunteer Cornwall, and launched the Cornwall Celebrates Volunteering Awards.

Until 2011, we had been operating from a variety of rented spaces in Truro but we were able to invest some of our reserves in the purchase of a modern new office in the Newham area. Complete with PV panels and double cladded insulation, we were determined to minimise our carbon footprint and create a pleasant working environment for our staff, volunteers and visiting learners on our many training courses.

Now the organisation employs over 30 staff supporting hundreds of volunteer-led projects ranging from helping people home from hospital to providing volunteer advocates for children in the care system.

Transport is still at the heart of the organisation, with the volunteer car scheme still going strong and an accessible vehicle and a community minibus increasing the options available to individuals and communities.

As you can see from our website, we are involved in a wide range of activities, all supporting the idea of voluntary action. We want to see everyone in Cornwall playing an active role in their community and looking out for each other. That's what we are about and working with charities, community groups and volunteers means we get to see the very best of human nature day in and day out.