Rugby MP thanks 'hidden army' of volunteers who supported thousands through the pandemic
Mr Pawsey volunteered at the Locke House vaccination centre, and saw first-hand how important the town's volunteers are
Rugby MP Mark Pawsey has paid tribute to volunteers across the borough this week - including those who volunteered alongside him to help at the town's Locke House vaccination centre.
The thank-you comes as part of Volunteers’ Week 2021 which takes place between 1-7 June.
Volunteers’ Week is an annual celebration of the contribution and dedication of millions of volunteers who give up their time in the service of others.
The outbreak of Covid-19 has highlighted just how important volunteers are to society.
Mr Pawsey described Rugby's volunteers as a 'hidden army', helping with everything from supporting those who were shielding, to stepping up to deliver the lifesaving vaccine at Locke House.
Mr Pawsey said: “Volunteers’ Week is about recognising everyone who has pitched in to do vital work as a volunteer over the past year.
"We must acknowledge the huge number of first-time volunteers in communities around the country, and also say thank you to all those who usually volunteer but have not been able to because of the pandemic.
“People rolling up their sleeves to volunteer has been absolutely vital to the delivery of the vaccine.
"I have both helped at, and been jabbed at, the Locke House Vaccine Hub here in Rugby and the friendly welcome of the volunteers there has undoubtedly contributed to the success of the vaccination programme here in Rugby.
“As we look to bounce back from the impact of coronavirus, volunteers will continue to be important for our local community.
"They will be vital both for helping those who have been affected by the pandemic, and for beginning to restart many of the community and social activities which we have all missed over the past year.
"I want to pay tribute to them this Volunteers’ Week and I hope other Rugby residents will as well.”
Because of the outbreak of Covid-19 many volunteering organisations have been greatly affected because of the restrictions on social gatherings, visiting and community spaces being closed.
Many have adapted to the challenges and continued to work within their communities, while new volunteer groups have come together to help out during the pandemic.
Some, such as the Hillmorton and East Rugby Together Community Group (known as HeART) are committed to continuing to help in their area even as the pandemic recedes.