Ian•is taking the pledge to encourage people throughout Edinburgh South to give time to benefit the local community, after joining pop mogul Pete Waterman and BBC Radio Five Live presenter, Rachel Burden in the build up to CSV Make a Difference Day, the biggest single day of volunteering on Saturday 29 October 2011.

Pete Waterman and Rachel Burden have given Ian a ‘pledge kit’ with a host of ideas to benefit others, such as writing letters and drawing pictures to sick children in hospitals, baking a Chocolate Fridge Cake to donate to a lonely neighbour, homeless shelter or nursing home, planting a mini meadow in a local park to attract wildlife or even knitting blankets for lonely pets in shelters.

CSV Make a Difference Day ambassador, Pete Waterman, says “Rachel and I are encouraging MPs and people of all ages to take part in CSV Make a Difference Day to combat feelings of isolation, loneliness and anxiety, as well as making local communities a happier, more welcoming place.

“Get to know your neighbours, make friends, get fit and transform the place where you live into a beautiful haven. Lift community spirits by organising a garden makeover, Halloween street party or bingo evening at a homeless shelter, nursing home or hospital ward. Even simple changes like reporting faulty street lights can have a positive impact in strengthening communities.”

CSV Make a Difference Day, is the UK’s biggest single day of volunteering on•Saturday 29 October 2011•with events taking place a week either side. This year the focus is isolation and loneliness. The campaign is looking to demonstrate how giving time through volunteering with friends, family and neighbours and being an active member of the community can make people feel less lonely, anxious and isolated.

CSV is giving away free inspirational ideas on how you can combat isolation and loneliness to create a happier, stronger and safer community:

  • ‘How-to make a chocolatey difference’ a special Chocolate Fridge Cake recipe by Chef, Sam Stern
  • ‘How-to volunteer to combat loneliness’
  • ‘How-to write a difference’ for very sick children in hospitals
  • ‘How-to get online’ for people who have never used the internet
  • ‘How-to combat community isolation’
  • ‘How-to knit an animal blanket’ (because pets get lonely too!)

The campaign is looking to empower lonely and isolated people as well as individuals and groups to volunteer this year. New independent research shows that nearly a third of young people are currently more anxious about their future since the onset of recession, while 1 in 10 of the population report anxiety following the summer riots.

To find out more about volunteering on CSV Make a Difference Day, call us on FREEPHONE 0800 284 533 or email•difference@csv.org.uk•or go online atwww.csv.org.uk/difference

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