Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 25 December 2014

Retired urged to be aid volunteers

Irish Aid is due to host a fair in Dublin to highlight the opportunities for volunteering in the developing world
Irish Aid is due to host a fair in Dublin to highlight the opportunities for volunteering in the developing world

Recently retired public servants are being called on to use their skills to help the most vulnerable around the world.

Almost 30 charities and organisations will stage a fair in Dublin this Saturday to highlight the opportunities for volunteering in the developing world.

The event, hosted by Irish Aid in its information centre on O'Connell Street, will target public servants who retired in recent years.

Minister for trade and development Joe Costello said the fair will give those thinking about volunteering the chance to meet a wide range of organisations involved in both long-term and short-term projects.

"Irish people have a long tradition of volunteering abroad and I am committed to building on this through the Irish Aid programme," he said.

"Our enduring ties to Africa and the developing world reflect our sense of solidarity with those communities less well-off than ourselves and our national vision of a fair global society.

"Since the start of 2011, some 22,000 public servants with vast experience and a great reserve of skills have retired, many taking early retirement. I am hopeful that some of them will consider sharing their skills to make a lasting difference in the developing world."

The 27 NGOs taking part include Voluntary Service Overseas, United Nations Volunteer and Goal, which are recruiting for long-term volunteers, while Habitat for Humanity, Suas and the Hope Foundation have information and advice about short-term opportunities.

It will take place from 11am to 4pm on Saturday, September 29, in the Irish Aid Volunteering and Information Centre, 27 - 31 Upper O'Connell Street.

A series of workshops will take place throughout the day including a panel discussion entitled "Volunteering in Retirement - What you have to Give and Gain".

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