York, North Yorkshire – After being assessed over a 12-month period, Older Citizens Advocacy York [OCAY] have announced that earlier this month they were awarded the highly-regarded Investing in Volunteers award – the UK quality standard for good practice in volunteer management.

OCAY has become the sole charity in York to currently hold an Investing in Volunteers award. They are a local charity which supports people in York over the age of 50 to have their voices heard in the issues which affect them. Supporting over 300 people every year, OCAYs twenty-four volunteers and three staff members provide this invaluable service. Jonah Hebron, Project Support Officer and lead-facilitator for the award said that “OCAYs enduring commitment to its volunteers has been recognised through this achievement. We wanted to ensure that the tireless work our volunteers undertake, the time they give to make York so special, was matched by the support OCAY can offer them. We can now proudly say that this is the case”.

“OCAY shows a strong commitment to involving volunteers from all backgrounds and its volunteer team is reflective of the communities in which it works . . . Volunteers interviewed feel very valued by OCAY and all said they felt appreciated by both staff and the people they support”, said the assessor who passed OCAY. Fifty-three organisations in the UK have achieved or renewed the award this year, and a total of 201 organisations in the UK currently hold the standard.

Rachel Totton, chair of trustees, said that “'OCAY could not carry out its work without the commitment and energy of its volunteers. It is only right that we should make supporting them a top priority for the charity. The award shows that anyone joining us as a volunteer can expect that OCAY will take great care to give them a good experience of volunteering”. OCAY has many different volunteer roles including trustees. If you want to know more please contact Ruth Potter, Charity Manager on 01904 676200 or ruth@ocay.org.uk.