HC Deb 28 February 2001 vol 363 cc709-10W
Dr. Tonge

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to increase the numbers of paid staff needed to train and support volunteers as part of the Government's plan to increase volunteering. [151181]

Mr. Boateng

The Government place a great deal of importance on the training and support provided to volunteers, whether this is provided by paid staff or by unpaid volunteer managers.

A major package to encourage more people to get involved in their communities was announced by my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 11 January. The £300 million package almost doubles the Government's commitment to the voluntary sector and will help, among other things, to develop the infrastructure of the voluntary sector, to assist community groups in deprived areas, and to fund a new National Experience Corps making use of the talents of the over-50s.

Some of this money will be used in support of paid staff who will be funded by Government through grant aid to volunteering and community organisations in support of volunteering objectives. However, there is no ready source of information on the number of paid staff who are currently, or who will in the future be, supported in this way.

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