Speaker Meeting, 6.15 for 6.30pm

Mon, Feb 7th 2022 at 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Speaker: Jol Rose, Inclusion and Collaboration Development Officer, Voluntary Action Swindon (VAS)


Jol Rose, our speaker at this meeting, is the Inclusion And Collaboration Development Officer at Voluntary Action Swindon (VAS).

The origins of VAS date back to 1932 when the Swindon Council of Social Service was set up.  Its purpose and core activities have changed over time, from unemployment relief during the 1930s depression to evacuation schemes during the Second World War.  In the post-war period, VAS began to deal with a much more complicated array of social needs, gradually transitioning to a support agency and focal point for the hundreds of charitable organisations and self-help groups working in Swindon. 

What has remained consistent is that throughout its life, VAS has provided much needed assistance to people unable to help themselves.

VAS is based on John Street in Swindon town centre.  It offers a wide variety of services and support to the local voluntary and community sector. This includes advice on fundraising and governance, printing services, DBS checks and room and equipment hire. 

Jol’s role is to strengthen the Swindon Equality Coalition and other initiatives to promote equality and inclusion, as well as to support collaboration between Swindon's voluntary sector organisations.  With experience in communications, the NHS, business support, the voluntary sector and running his own business, he has a broad experience to support these key elements of VAS' work. He is a passionate supporter of the voluntary sector.  The first seed for this passion germinated in his school years on hearing a speaker from Voluntary Services Overseas.  

On leaving school Jol joined the NHS in a role promoting good health.  It was here he discovered that people who have health problems often have many other problems too.   He then spent 3 years abroad working in a voluntary capacity.  On returning to the UK he worked for a bladder and bowl problems charity before moving to Germany where he ran his own business for 10 years.  Back home again, and before joining VAS, he was employed by Wiltshire County Council in a role supporting small businesses.

Jol said there isn’t much difference between running a charity and running a business.  “Swindon is growing fast” he said, “but unfortunately we are not seeing a similar growth in terms of people joining the voluntary sector.”  He continued: “I find that businesses want to get involved with the voluntary sector and I am really excited that a Community Hub has been set up in the former River Island shop premises in Swindon Town Centre which will make connection between the two much easier.”

Jol certainly came across as a fervent and enthusiastic supporter of the charity and voluntary sectors and Club members wished him every success in his work with Voluntary Action Swindon.

Voluntary Action Swindon Website

'What We Do' Main Pages:

We have played a role in a significant global public health achievement as the World Health Organization’s Africa region has officially been certified wild polio-free.

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Rotary’s second major donation, of £208,000, was handed over on 7th July 2021 when local Rotarians visited the Great Western Hospital to view the build progress of the nearly completed radiotherapy unit.

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All the funds will go to local charities supported by us

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Smallpox is the only human disease ever eradicated. Let’s make polio the second! Join the fight to end polio with Rotary on World Polio Day

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Brighter Futures launched their Radiotherapy Appeal in 2015. Today, 7 years later, a ribbon cutting ceremony has taken place at the Great Western Hospital

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He's taking part in the Youth Adventure Trust's Virtual Resilience Challenge from 13th to 21st February 2021

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From around the world Rotarians have responded to calls for help.

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£1286 has been sent from our Emergency Disaster Fund to the Disasters Emergency Committee UKRAINE HUMANITARIAN APPEAL

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£1,250 has been sent to both ​Prospect Hospice and Swindon Domestic Abuse Support Service to help bridge the funding gap both charities are currently experiencing.

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Coronavirus is a deadly risk for vulnerable families who have lost their homes. Read more...….

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"In musical entertainment Swindon punches way above its weight. Some of the youngsters we've heard tonight will go on to make a name for themselves"

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A new design for a new name

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Congratulations to the teams from St Joseph’s Catholic College Swindon. The intermediate team (in the picture) was commended and placed joint second by the judges

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Giving money and support to the people in Swindon & district who need it most

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We went to the races in March. It was a meeting with 10 races, 8 riders in each. It wasn’t at Epsom, or Haydock Park, or just up the M4 at Newbury. It was, of all places, in Wanborough Village Hall.

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First place team P.G.Events with the David Maggs Memorial Trophy

The winning team P.G.Events presented with the David Maggs Memorial Trophy to hold for one year by Swindon North Rotary President Mike Helyer

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The Rotary Club hands over £1100 to the Youth Adventure Trust

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Club President Kathy Hobson presents a cheque for £750 to Richard Millard, Chairman of the Trustees

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A brief summary of our Rotary year ending 30/06/2021

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Attendees found plenty at the 2018 Rotary Convention to remind them of the fellowship that binds them and the diversity that Rotary embodies

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Torquay’s Riviera Centre was the venue for the Rotary in Britain and Ireland (RIBI) Annual Conference on 6th April 2018

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Rotarian Terry Williams on his Christmas Tree Plantation

Rotarian Terry Williams has been selling his locally grown Christmas trees again and all the proceeds are going to be divided between two charities

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The new Horizons College Minibus, donated collectively by all the Rotary Clubs of Swindon and District, has been branded with the Rotary logo and other graphics by the Wootton Bassett based company, PG Events, free of charge.

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Rotarian Terry's Christmas Trees enable the Rotary Club to present £1,225 to the Friends of Angel's Orphanage

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The Rotary Club of North Wiltshire (the name was changed to the Rotary Club of Swindon North in 2008) received its charter from Rotary International on 28th September 1966

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Raising funds for the Brighter Futures Appeal

A static 100-mile cycle ride from Highworth to Windsor Castle

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Our stall at Highworth Market on 2nd May 2015

Many thanks to everyone who visited our stall at Highworth Market on 2nd May

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The Community & Vocational Service Committee is tasked with organising fund-raising events and functions.

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Rotarian Terry Williams' remarkable and unique fund raising effort, living in a ShelterBox emergency tent for a week in the Market Place, Highworth

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The Club Service Committee manages the administration of the Rotary Club.

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International, Foundation & Youth Activities Service Committee

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Club Council

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Exceeding expectations, President Lynn's challenge to 3 club members to Zumba in the Co-op Foodstore raised £700 for Swindon Young Carers.

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The Rotary Club of Swindon North charity concert featuring the Swindon Male Voice Choir in St Michael's Church, Highworth.

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A Charity Dog Racing event with dinner held at Blunsdon Abbey Stadium on 14th March 2015 in aid of the NSPCC

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We've Zumda'd in the Highworth Co-op, now we've ridden our bikes in there

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