8th March 2006




Lincoln MP Gillian Merron is hoping to inspire staff and students at the University of Lincoln to make a real difference to someone’s life by becoming a volunteer.


Gillian is visiting the University of Lincoln on Friday 10th March to talk about working as a volunteer in South America.


The Labour MP spent her parliamentary recess in Guyana with the Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) and was the first ever sitting MP to work on a VSO placement.


Gillian says she’s looking forward to sharing her experience: “I am pleased to be joining with the university to promote the value of voluntary work, by talking about my recent trip to Guyana.


"The developing world remains the issue constituents most frequently contact me about.  It is the influence of people in Lincoln, and my work as an MP in support of campaigns like Make Poverty History, that gave me the impetus to volunteer during last summer's parliamentary recess to work directly with people in the developing world.


"As a volunteer with VSO, I worked with the Guyana Teachers’ Union to develop and support teachers, over a five-week placement, using my skills and background as a former public services trade union official and as a Member of Parliament to support this important development project.


"I hope by telling my story of volunteering in Guyana, students will be inspired to offer their assistance to projects both here in Lincoln and beyond."


Volunteer co-ordinator at the University of Lincoln Shelagh Chapman says: “Gillian has been to the university before to make presentations and has been very supportive of what we do. By doing volunteer work in Guyana she is showing that she is prepared to take time out from her busy schedule to help others. Anyone coming to the talk will learn a great deal from her experience.”


The presentation at 12 noon in the Co-op Lecture Theatre is open to staff and students.


For more information contact:

Kate Strawson Press Officer (01522) 886244.

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