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Volunteer and community hub created at old Staffordshire County Council building in Stafford

By Staffordshire Newsletter  |  Posted: June 06, 2014

Volunteer and community hub created at old Staffordshire County Council building in Stafford

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AN EMPTY old council building will be brought back to life in Stafford town centre as a new voluntary and community hub.

Teams of volunteers are busy revamping 17 Eastgate Street, a former county council treasurers’ office, into a new home for VAST.

The organisation, which will lease the site from Staffordshire County Council, provides support and services to voluntary organisations, charities, community groups and social enterprises countywide.

It will open in August and 14 organisations have reserved space, including Stafford charity House of Bread which will use an office at the site.

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The move will breathe new life into the building, which has been empty since staff moved into the new Staffordshire Place HQ more than two years ago.

Sajid Hashmi, chief executive of VAST, said: “We are thankful for all the support offered by organisations like Argos and PM Training. The volunteer time they have contributed is invaluable to the progression of this project.

“We are hoping that more organisations will come forward to offer their time and skills to this flagship project. We have lots of rooms to decorate so the more the merrier."

In May last year VAST won a £1.9 million, four-year county council contract to provide support services to voluntary and community organisations on subjects, including bidding for funding, recruiting volunteers, staff training and tendering for contracts.

Mike Lawrence, cabinet member for culture, community and localism with Staffordshire County Council, added: "It's vital that we support these organisations to deliver the best services possible and having VAST to provide this support will help us achieve this.”

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