Volunteers’ Week is absolutely an important thank you to volunteers across Scotland and for the contribution they make to communities and society.

But it is also a great opportunity to say thank you to, and recognise, those who help people volunteer and make volunteering happen. Voluntary Action Scotland’s (VAS) take on Volunteers Week 2018 is just this.

VAS is the network of local Third Sector Interfaces (TSIs). TSIs provide support for the local community and voluntary sector – every day they empower more people to make a difference in their community. Core to this is their work to support Volunteering for All in communities across the country.

The work of TSIs can often go unseen and unrecognised – as they’d rather focus on the brilliant volunteers they work with and on the things that local volunteer involving organisations do to support and engage volunteers. And rightly so.

So it’s my pleasure this year to big up the TSIs – to showcase just how important they are to volunteering in Scotland. Without them thousands just would not get the support they need to step into volunteering, find the right opportunities or even be aware of volunteering and what it can offer them.

This year we’ve sourced a cross section of TSI volunteering support tales from across the TSI Network to showcase just how TSIs are supporting Volunteering For All, all across Scotland.

What is also great about these tales is that they feature a number of brilliant individuals who have beaten the odds with the help of the TSI to volunteer and are making a real difference locally – and local VIOs who are working to evolve and grow with support of TSIs to make Volunteering For All a reality.

TSIs are key to Volunteering for All in our local communities because they have huge local knowledge and trusted relationships that they make the most of in making connections for people who want to volunteer and organisations who want to involve them. From working with disengaged young people, enabling those with addional support needs, working with voluntary organisations to open their doors to more diverse volunteers and more – the tales we’ve captured demonstrate the depth of support TSIs provide.

It’s been my pleasure for the last five years to work with the TSI network in a practice support capacity. Their commitment to volunteering and to supporting local communities has inspired me throughout this time and it’s brilliant to be able to say a big thank you.

You can catch our Volunteering Tales from the TSI Network each day of Volunteers Week on the VAS website or on our social media.