Organisations representing charities have welcomed a pledge by Prime Minister David Cameron that a future Conservative government would introduce paid volunteering leave for employees in public sector and large private sector organisations.
Under plans announced on 10 April, a law would be passed requiring public sector employers and companies with more than 250 employees to release staff for up to three days a year for voluntary work.
Research carried out earlier this year by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), whose work includes providing banking and fundraising services to other charities, revealed that only seven per cent of workers currently receive time off to volunteer. Meanwhile, nearly six out of ten people questioned believed that offering staff more paid volunteering leave would encourage them to give up time for good causes.
CAF chief executive John Low said: “Charities across Britain rely on the dedication and determination of volunteers to make a difference and action designed to get more people involved in volunteering should be applauded.
“Many people want to see their employer give them the chance to support good causes through work and organised workplace giving programmes can help us to develop a culture of volunteering across the UK.
“Businesses that help their staff get involved in volunteering benefit too. Not only does volunteering help develop team working skills, but evidence also shows that it makes employees feel more engaged and proud at work, which can increase their productivity and loyalty towards an employer.”
Asheem Singh, director of public policy at the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations added: “This is exciting news – it recognises the crucial role of charities in building a better society.”
Moore Thompson has a strong track record in supporting volunteering among its own employees and can provide advice to charities or businesses interested in becoming involved in this type of initiative. For more information, please contact us.