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Charity survey reveals insights into why its volunteers sign up

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A recent volunteer survey by national food charity FoodCycle has revealed the top reasons people choose to volunteer with it.

FoodCycle carried out the study in August 2021 to find out exactly what motivates its volunteers to sign up. Asking which of the charity’s five core aims was most important to them, the results suggested that tackling food poverty was the number one reason volunteers decided to take part in providing food and conversation to local communities across the country, with 45% picking ‘nourishing the hungry’ as their top motivator.

The second most popular reason, 25% of FoodCycle volunteers said that supporting the mental health and wellbeing of guests was most vital to them. A further 15% said they took part to help connect communities and the remaining 15% were most interested in promoting sustainability.

Comments from volunteers included from Robyn, a FoodCycle Clacton volunteer, who said:

“After a session with FoodCycle Clacton, I feel like I’ve done some good for the local community, not to mention it is great for my own health and wellbeing – I always feel like I have done a four-hour intensive work out. I’m so glad I decided to help out and sign up to FoodCycle, I know it’s a small thing I do but I feel like, I’m more a part of my community in Clacton because of it.”

Another volunteer, Ed, from FoodCycle Bristol, said:

“The charity’s work and aims align with my personal values and lifestyle choices. I am helping to alleviate the social and financial positions of less privileged individuals, fight a broken food system, encourage social connection and promote healthy, nutritious meals using donated surplus fruit and veg.”

FoodCycle’s volunteer survey is part of a major recruitment drive for the charity taking place across September.

Mary McGrath MBE, FoodCycle CEO said:

“Not one of our Projects could run without the help of our volunteers and while we are hugely thankful, we also believe that there are so many benefits to joining us. From seeing first hand how a friendly chat around a beautifully-laid table can transform someone’s day to taking food that would otherwise have ended up in the bin and transforming it into a delicious meal for someone who is hungry, the reasons our volunteers love working with us are endless. We hope this awareness campaign will inspire more kind souls to come forward to help strengthen their own communities.”

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