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Departmental Voluntary Work

Volume 492: debated on Friday 8 May 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what his Department’s policy is on its staff undertaking voluntary work; and what estimate he has made of the number of such staff who undertook voluntary work in the last 12 months. (272496)

The Department believes that volunteering is important to enable staff to engage with communities they serve and have a better understanding of local issues to help deliver the Children’s Plan.

The Department has a well established policy to encourage all staff to volunteer on a regular and sustained basis. The Department has an annual 10 per cent. target of staff volunteering. The Department’s recent Staff Survey showed that up to 317 of staff have volunteered in the last 12 months (13 per cent. of those who responded). The Department encourages staff to volunteer by regularly advertising national and local opportunities on the Department’s intranet and local communication channels; there are also local volunteering contacts on all of the Department’s sites in Darlington, Sheffield, Runcorn and London.