03:17AM, Wednesday 14 December 2011
Professional people are being urged to volunteer their skills in aid of older people in need in this week's Helping Hands appeal.
Age Concern Slough and Berkshire East provides an information and advocacy service, funded by the Royal Borough, to older people concerned about money or benefits.
Chief executive Tracey Morgan said: "We are grateful for funding towards these services but it is very limited and only funds part time workers.
"We need a range of volunteers, including those from professional backgrounds to rise to this challenge particularly during the current economic climate when we are seeing more older people than ever calling up in need of help."
The charity's treasurer spends one day a week offering tax advice for free because she wants to share her professional expertise with those less fortunate.
"We need really professional people giving their time freely for people who need it," she added. "It's frightening what's going on in Europe and it's directly impacting people's lives."
But simply having a cup of coffee can also help the charity at its Rendezvous Cafe, in Maidenhead Town Hall.
The St Ives Road cafe is staffed by volunteers with learning disabilities from the Ways into Work scheme, but more helpers are needed to support them.
"We're looking for any volunteers, especially older people to support and have an empathy with people with learning disabilities, and there's a range of things that people can do," said Tracey.
She encouraged shoppers to call into the cafe and said: "It's not a private company running it, it's a local independent charity helping local people. If you haven't got time to volunteer, or money to give a donation, you can just use the cafe and that will help local people."
Call Jane Lawrence, volunteer manager, on 0844 815 9383 or 01753 822890 to help.
Helping Hands is the name of the Advertiser's appeal which was launched early this year. Each week the Advertiser features appeals from groups in need of assistance, such as a piece of equipment, volunteers to take on roles, or help with a major project.
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