James HowellStaff Writerjhowell@heartlandpublications.com
September 30, 2012
The inaugural volunteer fair was held last Wednesday at Family Central to allow businesses the opportunity to recruit volunteers from the community.
“Our vision is to foster community power by mobilizing the strengths and resources of neighbors as volunteers, resulting in a community empowered to welcome life’s opportunities,” said Glenda Luther, Ashe County’s volunteer coordinator.
According to Luther, the event was met with excitement from agencies. Luther said “our representation was great; 28 agencies and organizations that house volunteers set up booths during the volunteer fair.”
However, the enthusiasm from agencies didn’t spread to the community, because attendance from the public was lacking, said Luther.
In spite of this, Luther remained optimistic. “Being the first volunteer fair, participation was pretty good,” said Luther.
Luther also acknowledged the number of high school students who attended the fair. “We did have some high school students visit the volunteer fair and that was great. This was a good opportunity for them to find ways to complete their volunteer hours,” said Luther.
According to Luther, the event was held to match possible volunteers with agencies that they might enjoy working with.
“We have people who want to volunteer, but don’t know where to start. This event was meant to be that starting point,” said Luther.
Luther also said “for those who already volunteer, it’s a good opportunity to see what other outlets were available.”
Networking didn’t come exclusively between volunteers and agencies. While at the fair, some agencies formed partnerships with each other, said Luther.
According to Luther, she is planning a second annual volunteer fair for next year.
For more information on becoming a volunteer, call 336-246-2461 or 336-246-1525, or email at Glenda.firstname.lastname@example.org.