Greater London Volunteering (GLV) are supporting the Mayor of London’s campaign #LondonIsOpen, highlighting the value that all our communities bring to the capital.

We know that volunteering makes a huge contribution to our city, so we would like to remind everyone that anybody living in the UK who is a European Union national or from a European Economic Area (EEA) country remains eligible and very welcome to volunteer. Anybody from a country who requires a Visitor Visa is also permitted to volunteer for up to 30 days in a registered charity.

Volunteering is a fantastic way of integrating into and understanding a new community, sharing and building skills, and finding common ground. People from diverse communities already volunteer alongside each other harmoniously and effectively to make our city a better place to live and work.

GLV and its members encourage all in our volunteering community to work together and to think creatively about how we can develop volunteering programmes to increase community cohesion, challenge discrimination in all its forms, and harness the skills of volunteers from around the world.

London is European Volunteering Capital for 2016

London has been crowned European Volunteering Capital 2016, following a successful bid led by Team London and Greater London Volunteering which was delivered to the European Volunteer Centre (CEV).

The CEV is the network of over 80 national, regional and local volunteer centres and volunteer support agencies across Europe. For 20 years CEV has promoted and supported volunteering through advocacy, knowledge sharing and capacity building and training.

Competing against 10 other cities, London won for its innovative programmes and its creative approach to funding and resourcing volunteer organisations and infrastructure organisations.

Gabriella Civico, director of CEV, said: “The city is an outstanding example of how local government, local people and businesses can strategically harness the benefits of volunteering to improve people’s lives and the environment, and contribute to socially cohesive communities.”

In a statement, Boris Johnson the Mayor of London said: “I’m very proud that London has been recognised as the top volunteering city in Europe. Tens of thousands of Londoners are now giving a hand to others and helping to make London a cleaner, greener and more welcoming place for everyone.” “I am delighted all ‎our efforts have been recognised. We worked with Greater London Volunteering to win the bid, so I will start by thanking James and the teams in the volunteer centres.” “I would also like to thank everyone who posted photos encouraging people to ‘vote London’, and of course our funders and wonderful delivery partners.‎ Without all of you, we could not have achieved this prestigious award.”

Greater London Volunteering would like to thank Team London, the local volunteer centres, and most importantly, all of London’s fantastic and truly inspirational volunteers, for helping London secure this title.

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