Atrium's first Volunteer Week event ran from Monday 17th October until Friday 21st October, 2016.
Each day Atrium colleagues gave their time, skills and effort to assist and support charities and organisations in the local community.
Volunteer Week kicked off with Atrium colleagues spending a day with the Finsbury and Clerkenwell Volunteers at the Vibast Community Centre in London, preparing and serving at the Lunch Club, socialising with the community and sharing in a game of Bingo!
The Finsbury and Clerkenwell Volunteers serve older and disabled people, many of them lonely and isolated, they also provide home visits, telephone calls and assisted shopping trips for those who are housebound, as well as a Lunch Club for its more able-bodied clients.
On day 2 our colleagues spent an afternoon with the Open School East Volunteers in Hackney, assisting older people with technology, socialising and even a game of Bingo!
Open School East is a service that provides arts education skills for residents in Islington and Hackney. They also provide a Mobile Seniors Group to help users learn about the internet and how to use technology.
Volunteer Week Day 3 saw Atrium colleagues helping out at the Vauxhall Food Bank in London, sorting food items in the warehouse and packaging them up, preparing the Foodbank café for opening and helping to clear away afterwards. Organised by the Trussell Trust, the Vauxhall Food Bank organisation provides food parcels for those most in need.
On Day 4 Atrium colleagues helped out at Abbey Gardens in East London, planting vegetables in the communal growing area of the gardens.
Abbey Gardens is an open-access harvest garden in the East London borough of Newham where anyone is welcome to participate in the communal growing of flowers, fruit and vegetables. Unlike the traditional allotment system, no one has their own patch and everyone gardens together at regular gardening sessions led by an experienced gardener. The produce is shared among volunteers and is also available to the local community in return for donations from one of the garden’s two Honesty Stalls.
On the final day of Atrium's Volunteer Week our colleagues helped out at the Acton Homeless Concern Centre in London, preparing and serving food for the Breakfast and Lunch clubs, preparing the café for opening and helping to clear away afterwards.
The charity's mission is to provide a caring and safe environment for the poor, the marginalised and those who suffer from isolation or are in any kind of physical or emotional need. The need for a local centre where those who are homeless or inadequately housed can find food, clothing, friendship, companionship and advocacy remains as much a pressing need now as it did when the doors of the charity first opened.