Celebratory evening for local good causes

Young volunteers Kim Neasham and Steven Hunter interview Julie Kelly, Chair of Trustees at Meadow Well Connected.
Young volunteers Kim Neasham and Steven Hunter interview Julie Kelly, Chair of Trustees at Meadow Well Connected.

Young volunteers are planning a big celebration for good causes in North Tyneside.

They are working with North Tyneside VODA (Voluntary Organisations Development Agency) to hold an event celebrating the work of charity trustees and community groups.

Funding has been secured from the BIG Lottery’s Celebrate programme for the event, which will take place on Friday from 6pm to 9pm at the Linskill Centre inNorth Shields.

The youngsters, aged between 16 and 18, are all graduates from VODA’s National Citizen Service (NCS) programme who were keen to continue to volunteer their time for the benefit of the local community.

They have planned a James Bond-themed evening, complete with a three course meal, short film screenings, live entertainment and guest speakers.

Harry James, 17, from Whitley Bay, who is volunteering on the marketing team, said: “We’re determined to give trustees from our area a really good evening as a huge ‘thanks’ for everything that they do.

“Rather than them putting all the work in, for one night we want to switch the roles and give them a chance to relax and celebrate with a meal and entertainment.

“We’re all really looking forward to the big event!”

Ahead of the event, some of the young people interviewed trustees, including those at Meadow Well Connected in North Shields, and have created some short films which will be screened on the evening.

They also aim to create a lasting record of the trustees’ in attendance with a photo booth and feedback tasks.

Linda Hoffman, chair of VODA’s Trustees, said: “One of our roles at VODA is to support local trustees, and we know from that just how hard committee members work, the time and dedication they put in.”

“They are often the forgotten force of the voluntary and community sector and we’re keen that their work is not only recognised but celebrated too.

“This event is a way of doing that and the young people involved have worked amazingly hard to give attendees a night to remember!”

Places are free but limited for this event, and need to be booked in advance. Contact VODA on (0191) 643 2626 or email admin@voda.org.uk if you are a local trustee who is interested in attending.