One in five people would become volunteers if they knew how to find opportunities to do so.
That is one of the findings of research commissioned by Volunteer Ireland which is urging the public to get involved in helping others in their community.
The call comes as the organisation marks National Volunteering Week which takes place next week.
The service has organised two community outreach events which will take place at Galway City Library on Tuesday from 11am to 2pm and on Wednesday from 11am to 4.30pm at ARD family resource centre in Doughiska.
National Volunteering Week highlights the ways individuals and organisations can become involved in supporting causes, aiding charities and helping in their local communities.
People interested in finding out about volunteering in the city and county and who are unable to attend any of these sessions can log on to www.volunteergalway.ie and search through a daily updated list of volunteer opportunities. They can also call to its office at William Street West or telephone (091 ) 581727.
Donncha Foley, the development manager of Volunteer Galway, says the organisation is keen to ensure that those interested in volunteering can discover the “amazing contribution” they can make to the lives of others in their community.
“We have approximately 150 distinct volunteer roles at any one time that are available for viewing and we can help people to choose a volunteer role that suits them best.”
Volunteer Galway’s service is free to the public and any non-profit organisations wishing to advertise a volunteer opportunity.
Mr Foley says the research carried out on its behalf by nfpSynergy also found that 25 per cent of Irish adults are involved in regular volunteering.
“The most common place where people volunteer, at 72 per cent, is with a local charity. The most common motivation to volunteer was to support a specific cause (55 per cent ), while helping out in the local community was the priority for 53 per cent of volunteers.”
Since opening in 2006 almost 10,000 people in Galway city and county have used Volunteer Galway’s services to find volunteering opportunities. They have generated an estimated one million hours in volunteering in their local community.
Volunteer Galway also provides volunteer management expertise to local non-profit community groups and provides access to Garda vetting for these organisations.