In case you didn’t know everyone who writes for, produces, edits and designs this wonderful magazine is volunteering their time and skills to get it put together for our community. We love spending time digging out stories and interesting happenings in our wonderful Beeston.

The start of a new year is often a time when people have some thoughts about setting goals and making plans for their year ahead. You hear a lot of phrases like ‘New Year, New You’ flying around and these often are associated with mental and physical health.

So with that in mind, have you ever thought that spending some of your time helping others, a cause you believe in or just something you’re passionate about, can be very rewarding and help you achieve those ambitions and intentions?

Top reasons to volunteer:

Making a difference: Volunteering allows you to make a difference in your community and in other people’s lives. Whether you’re helping out at a local food bank, reading to students, or working with a charity, your efforts will have an important and lasting impact.

Personal enrichment: Volunteering can be a great way to learn something new, build skills, and gain valuable experience. You’ll be able to meet new people, explore different career paths, and explore new hobbies. It’s rare you leave a volunteering stint without a smile on your face, knowing that you’ve made a difference.

Networking: Getting involved with a volunteer organisation provides you with the opportunity to meet like-minded people who share your values and interests. Networking can help you find new contacts, open doors to career opportunities, and build relationships.

Self-fulfillment: Volunteering can be a great way to achive a sense of purpose and gain a sense of personal satisfaction. Doing good for others can give you a sense of pride and joy that can last long after the volunteer work is completed.

Having Fun: Volunteering is fun! You get to have the opportunity to explore new activities and make new friends. Volunteering with a group of people can also add a social aspect to the work, making it a fun and rewarding experience.

Boosting your CV – Adding volunteer experience looks great on your CV, as it shows your character and interests. It also allows you to show off some skills that you may not utilise in your actual job(s) and it gives you a chance to test out new and different responsibilities too.

We did a lil’ call out on Beeston Updated’s Facebook page and thank you for the huge amount of replies and volunteering examples we received. There were so many wonderful volunteering examples and we’ve spoken to a few local people below.

We sadly couldn’t include them all, but we did learn that there are some great opportunities in and around Beeston to offer your time and skills too. Check out some that were mentioned in the replies below:

Middle Street Centre
Canalside & Heritage Centre
Hope House
Hope Food Bank
Beeston Parkrun
Beeston Library
Beeston Ladies Circle
2nd Beeston Sea Scouts
Beeston & District Roundtable
Leyton Crescent Community Centre

Gill Elvidge Coker – Canalside Heritage Centre / Beeston Library
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“I volunteer at Canalside Heritage Centre in retail and run the Natter and Knit group.”

“Volunteering has always been really important to me, both as a way to put something back into my community and also to develop my skills. As a past career as a coach/adviser, I always encouraged young people to get involved as a way to develop skills and confidence.”

“I also volunteer with Inspire Beeston Library, running the Places of Welcome sessions with a co-volunteer. This group is for anybody who is lonely, socially isolated or new to the area.”

Dave Bagshaw – New Art Beginnings Group

“For about five years now I have been volunteering with the New Beginnings Art Group here in Beeston. The group is solely for folks, who because of illness or incapacity have had to stop working. Its purpose is to offer art experiences for those interested in the various methods of application from watercolour to Chinese Ink drawing.”

“Initially, the fact that I could make a decent cup of tea and take the tops off tubes of paint for those that couldn’t, was my primary function.”

“However, over the years I have been increasingly won over by the sheer determination of those who attend; one member, for instance, only has the use of one hand and produces some lovely work! The spirit of the group is tremendous and inspiring. My role within the group these days is as Secretary, administration, and communications. Volunteers are always in demand and would be welcomed by the group.”

Julia Carter
The Spencer Trust (

“I have volunteered in numerous areas over the last 25 years. It has helped me ‘try out’ a career interest, identify my strengths and is invaluable for gaining experience.”

“I had some difficult mental health issues and volunteering helped me regain my confidence and reduce my sense of isolation. Volunteering also led me to my current job at Nottingham Women’s Centre which I love!”

“It’s also amazing to feel like you are doing something worthwhile that helps others. I am currently on the board of The Spencer Trust, (which is a charity that supports the needs of the LGBTQ community) and we need passionate and driven people who love planning and helping at events.”

Chris Coates
2nd Beeston Sea Scouts (

“I’ve been volunteering with Scouts in Beeston for about 35 years”

“I came to work at Boots Head Office in 1987 and looked around for a Scout Group to help. By chance 2nd Beeston Sea Scouts HQ is just next to Boots on Lilac Grove in the Rylands. I wanted to give something back for the good times I experienced in my youth.”

“ It’s great to be able to develop and use my water skills to pass on to the Scouts. What keeps me going is seeing young people’s achievements through the years.

I’m now seeing grandchildren of some of the Scouts, joining as Beavers, Cubs and Scouts which is amazing. I have made lots of friends in Beeston and further afield including some trips abroad.”

“I feel very lucky to be part of a wonderful Scout Group and hope to be able to continue volunteering for a few more years, maybe even including their centenary, in 5 years time!”