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Civil Service aims to become ‘beacon of best practice’ in volunteer work


Sir Gus O'Donnell, the cabinet secretary, spent a day this week as a volunteer cycling coach, as part of a drive to encourage more civil servants to volunteer in their communities.

Sir Gus's role for the day, in Volunteer Week, was to work with occupational health staff to coach them in cycling proficiency.

Sir Gus also used the visit to talk about a Civil Service-wide group he has set up to promote volunteering. Led by Gill Rider, head of the Civil Service capability group, and working closely with the Office of the Third Sector in the Cabinet Office, the group met for the first time earlier this week to consider how the civil service can become a beacon of best practice in employee volunteering.

Sir Gus O'Donnell said: "From an employer's point of view, volunteering is an excellent way of broadening workforce skills and bringing organisations closer to the communities in which they operate. Volunteers' Week provides a valuable chance for employers to look at the vast range of opportunities available and find the best projects for themselves, their staff and their communities.

"As a a volunteer my day has been both enjoyable and a valuable learning experience for me to take back to the office.

"I want the Civil Service to be a beacon for employee volunteering across the country, and I look forward to the recommendations from the group headed by our volunteering champion, Gill Rider."


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