A Very Good DayPosted on 2nd June 2016 by Sean de Podesta
One unexpected consequence of being granted the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service was that we received an invitation to a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace. On 19 May, Neighbourhood Care Scheme volunteer Sheila Wood and I duly made our way to the palace.
Sheila has been volunteering with the scheme for thirteen years. She was not expecting that it would eventually lead to a visit to Buckingham Palace. We were there to represent all the hundreds of people who give their time and energy to make NCS the successful befriending and good neighbour scheme that it has become: hundreds of volunteers like Sheila, our volunteers in the office, all our scheme members who help with publicity, our steering group members…right up to the trustees of Impetus.
“A very good day,” Sheila said of her palace visit. “I loved being able to walk in the grounds and enjoy the beauty right in the middle of London.”
As for me, amidst the elegant crowd in the Palace Garden, I wondered why they were all there. I imagine that most of the guests had received invitations because they had been doing good things like all the volunteers involved with Impetus and NCS. This was the elegant tip of a very big iceberg of community and volunteer effort that helps hold the United Kingdom together as a civilised and decent nation.