Volunteers – A Force for Good

2018 is now well underway and it got off to the best start possible with Adrian Stephens joining the Fen Edge Community Association (FECA) team as Editor of the Fen Edge News. I would like to extend the warmest welcome to Adrian and I hope he gets great pleasure from the work ahead.

The Fen Edge Community Association and our 50 plus member organisations depend on the commitment and enthusiasm of volunteers to make anything happen. There was no clearer demonstration of that than when I went along to the Rampton ’77 Committee event in January. The Rampton Village Hall was absolutely buzzing and it was so clearly an event that the community looked forward to and were really so excited about. But behind every club, every meeting, every event are volunteers and, in this case, it was clear that Judy Garstang, Sue Palmer and their team had put in a great effort to pull the event together. Well done to them.

I know the work of all volunteers is really appreciated by everyone involved and I know that they themselves get satisfaction from their contributions too. But we should not forget that the people who volunteer are also busy people with work, personal and family commitments. The only difference is that when asked to help, these people say “yes!”

FECA supports organisations with grants but the financial support is often the easiest part of the equation. What FECA cannot supply is the people who commit their time and energy to the individual community associations and charitable organisations. The FECA grants we provide are to support the community but I also think of the grants as a way of supporting the volunteers. It is a way of saying “well done” and “thank you” for their efforts and if we can help to take some of the burden of fundraising away, then hopefully the volunteers will be able to focus more time on making the event itself a success.

Our community is a much better place for the work of the charities and community associations and we are greatly indebted to them. I hope that in 2018, FECA will be able to support more groups, more activities and hopefully inspire more people to come forward and volunteer some of their time. Local charities and community organisations strengthen our communities and make our villages even better places in which to live, work and study. Please see the this website for a list of the Clubs, Groups and Societies in the Fen Edge and please do take the initiative to contact them to see how you might be able to get involved as a participant or volunteer.

The May Bank Holiday will see two major activities supported by FECA. The Cottenham 7k Fun Run will set off on Saturday May 5th and is being organised by Martyn Leeks and his team of helpers. Please support that event – more runners equals more fun. That weekend will also see the Fen Edge Twinning Association heading off to France for a celebration of the 20th anniversary of the twinning arrangement with Avrillé. A ceilidh band will be travelling with them and we wish them safe travels and hope they have a lot of fun. As FECA, we have subsidised the transportation costs to enable as many people as
possible to travel. Once again, we are delighted to be able to support the work of the volunteers who are making this happen.

If you wish to start a new group, please get in contact. We would be delighted to help and share our knowledge.

Very best wishes
Neil Gough
Chair – Fen Edge Community Association