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Appeal for Volunteers

Date: Thursday 30 March

Appeal for Volunteers

The team behind Blairgowrie and Rattray Development Trust (BRDT) is appealing for volunteers to help support some of its locally-based community initiatives.

The following volunteering opportunities are available:

  • Saturday lunch club drivers
  • Discover Blairgowrie website updates/development
  • Hub Magazine coordinator
  • Booklore shop assistants

One of the aims of the Trust is to reduce food waste and food costs in the local community and encourage growing more food locally.

Every Saturday, a team of volunteer drivers delivers more than 90 portions of soup and cake to local residents. As well as lunch, local residents can order from a choice of three pre-cooked meals at significantly reduced prices.

Working with Fareshare, Neighbourly and the Co-op, BRDT uses in-date food and food which is at its best-before-date that supermarkets cannot sell anymore as ingredients for the Saturday and Wednesday lunch clubs and for nutritious pre-cooked meals, initiatives that first developed as part of the town’s response to the global coronavirus pandemic and efforts to reduce social isolation and malnutrition.

In 2022, nearly 4000 lunches and nearly 800 meals were delivered to local residents and, due to an increase in the numbers of people receiving deliveries, the Trust is keen to hear from anyone who has a couple of hours to spare every other Saturday to help out – as well as anyone who would like to receive homemade soup and cake delivered for free every Saturday lunchtime.

Meanwhile, the Trust is also looking for volunteers to help with the Discover Blairgowrie website, supporting efforts to coordinate, communicate, promote and develop what is happening in the town. Responsibilities would include adding events, checking with groups and businesses to ensure their information is up-to-date, managing mailing lists, and developing advertising opportunities and new sections of the online portal.

Teresa Donaldson is chair of BRDT. She said: “Volunteers are the lifeblood of any community organisation and BRDT is no different, relying as it does on the generosity and commitment of a team of some 150 volunteers to help it in its efforts to enhance the town for the benefit of all.

“BRDT has a number of roles within the community, working alongside local people, community groups, businesses and the local authority to help to create a thriving and attractive town with a strong sense of community and identity, appealing to those who live, work and visit the area.

“Following the completion of the town’s Community Action Plan in 2021 and the merger with Proactive Communities that year, BRDT’s core activities have grown considerably, particularly in terms of its community engagement work, and its commitment to reducing food waste, food costs, malnutrition and social isolation and to growing more food locally.

“To that end, we are keen to hear from anyone who may have a couple of hours to spare every other week to help deliver lunches to our Saturday Lunch Club, or who may have a background or interest in digital communications and websites to help out with Discover Blairgowrie or the Hub magazine, or who would be willing to help in Booklore.

“As well as supporting valuable services in the town, volunteers can also benefit from donating their time, often gaining new skills or enhancing existing skill sets, making new friends and improving their confidence. There are also well-documented benefits to people’s mental and physical health and wellbeing from volunteering.

“So if you would like to help give something back to your local community, we would love to hear from you!”

For further information on the opportunities available at BRDT or other community groups and organisations in the town, email