Do your bit to mark the Coronation: Charities support volunteering day

Do your bit to mark the Coronation: Britain’s biggest charities throw their support behind day of volunteering to celebrate historic weekend

  • The UK’s biggest charities have backed a day of volunteering for the coronation
  • Organisers want to create a tangible tribute to the King’s public service 

The country’s biggest and best-known charities have put their weight behind ‘The Big Help Out’ to celebrate the King’s Coronation in just 100 days’ time.

From the NSPCC and RSPCA to the Scouts and National Trust, dozens have backed a day of volunteering on May 8, the Bank Holiday Monday of the Coronation long weekend.

Its organisers, who include Brendan Cox, widow of murdered Labour MP Jo Cox, want to create both a tangible tribute to the King’s history of public service and echo his hope of creating a lasting legacy from the first crowning of a British monarch in 70 years.

Citizens the length and breadth of the UK will be encouraged to join the work already being undertaken in their communities by a brilliant array of organisations.

Some of the UK’s biggest and best-known charities will take part in a day of volunteering for the coronation. Pictured: The Princess of Wales visits Foodshare in Windsor

Preparations are being made for the King’s coronation, which will be held in just 100 days’ time

Launching the initiative, Chief Scout Bear Grylls said: ‘Volunteering has always been a huge part of what makes this country great – from families looking after evacuees during the Second World War to neighbours looking out for each other during the pandemic.

‘But it’s not just in times of crisis that we step up. Volunteering is what powers our communities, from Scout leaders to football coaches, collecting the shopping for an elderly neighbour to helping out at the school fete.

‘The Big Help Out will put volunteering centre stage for a day and give people easy ways to join in.’

He added: ‘We’re delighted to be a central part of the Coronation weekend, particularly given The King and Queen Consort’s long history of support for volunteering.’

Among other supporters are the Samaritans, Guide Dogs, the Royal National Institute for the Blind, Age UK, British Red Cross and the Royal Voluntary Service, all supported by the Together Coalition. 

Taster sessions will be set up across the country on May 8, with the opportunity to sign up to volunteer on a longer-term basis.

Organisers hope for an ‘unprecedented’ community response. Catherine Johnstone, chief of the Royal Voluntary Service, described it as a ‘wonderful opportunity’ for people to come together.

The Prince of Wales helps to sort food during a visit to Foodshare in Windsor on Thursday

Mr Cox, co-founder of the Together Coalition, said: ‘How we mark the Coronation will reflect the kind of country we are. We hope an opportunity to volunteer will leave a long-lasting legacy in communities around the country.’

Stuart Andrew, minister for civil s, said: ‘The Big Help Out is a fitting tribute to the King’s life of public service and the Queen Consort’s long-standing support for volunteering. 

It will give individuals the chance to see the wider benefits volunteering can bring to their own wellbeing and to efforts to tackle loneliness.’

Charles will be crowned alongside Camilla on May 6. A weekend of celebrations is being organised alongside the Westminster Abbey ceremony including a concert at Windsor Castle on May 7. 

Learn more at the initiative’s website

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