Volunteer Your Time
We depend on our network of volunteers – they are a vital part of what we do and the charity could not function without them.
There are many ways you can give your time to support Perennial, whether you are a garden-loving individual, part of a community group such as a horticultural society or a company looking for volunteering opportunities for staff as part of your social responsibility programme.
As a Perennial volunteer, you are part of a passionate team of like-minded individuals and gardening enthusiasts who want to help gardeners in need.
You can give as little or as much time as you would like to or are able. It’s a fantastic way to meet people, get involved and give something back.
There are various activities that volunteers can get involved with that make a relevant and useful contribution to our fundraising objectives. You might work at one of our events or help with existing fundraising activity. Alternatively we are always keen for people to establish their own fundraising or volunteering ideas that might benefit the charity.
Employee volunteering is a great way for a company to fulfil its Corporate Social Responsibility, while making a valuable contribution to our work and offering employees a rewarding experience.
Groups of corporate volunteers are particularly useful to us as they can offer skilled and efficient team members who we can trust to undertake projects effectively. Volunteering gives your employees the opportunity to break free from their normal work routine, boosting morale and in turn enabling your company to improve employee retention.
Read about how teams of employees from Unilever helped Perennial at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show by running the Plant Crèche and cloakroom, raising more money at the event than ever for the charity.
Individuals can also volunteer their time without being part of a workplace group. We always need volunteers to help out at flower shows, place collection boxes in local garden centres and nurseries and sell Christmas cards at charity shop outlets.
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There’s no business like show business
Paul had been an active volunteer for Perennial for a number of years, so when he started work at Unilever and his team was looking for a day out volunteering, he suggested they help out at Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.
The first year, over 30 volunteers from the Unilever Planning Team manned the cloakroom and Plant Crèche, the proceeds from which all went to Perennial.
In subsequent years, Paul encouraged other teams from Unilever to take part so they could work in rotation to fill all of the volunteering slots, as well as getting involved with other events such as the Garden Show at Firle Place, increasing the amount of money they could raise for Perennial.
For companies, it can be difficult to find volunteering opportunities where a whole team can take part together, but often it is team-building activities that most benefit the business.
Helping out at Hampton Court Palace Flower Show was not only a ready-made opportunity for a team event, it was also an attractive day out and a fantastic event for the employees to feel part of.
Bringing whole teams from Unilever worked well as the groups already knew how to operate as a team and quickly slotted into roles that suited their individual strengths.
They were happy to be customer facing and able to deal with a variety of situations that arose, meaning the operation went smoothly and the total amount raised for Perennial has increased year after year.
A match made in (gardening) heaven…
Angela is a valued member of the Perennial volunteering network. Here she explains why she loves to help out whenever she can:
“A client of my gardening business introduced me to the work of Perennial in 2012, just as it was about to re-launch … and what a transformation! I was very interested to hear all about it and immediately signed up to be a volunteer and generally be of help whenever possible. And then a wonderful thing happened on my very first volunteer tour of duty at the rose crèche at Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. Aside from having an incredibly enjoyable day, a fellow volunteer that day was Anne – we got chatting and it turned out to be a match made in gardening heaven! Anne wanted her garden re-designed, and I wanted to expand my design portfolio. The result: within three months of our very first meeting at Hampton Court and in record time, Anne now has a lovely new garden. It was such a pleasure to work with Anne, a model client, and we had great fun visiting gardens for inspiration (complete with sticky buns!).
… And all this thanks to Perennial! It’s great knowing the charity is there for all of us working in the industry, and I’m delighted to be able to support it to ensure it’s there if I need it in the future.”
Lady Penelope Gardening
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If you are interested in finding out more about opportunities for individual and corporate volunteering, please contact our Volunteer Support Officer, Laura Garnett.
Telephone: 0800 093 8510
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