A BRADFORD housing association is calling on the community to get involved in its new volunteer scheme which is about to launch.

Manningham Housing Association is to initially run the project on a trial basis for six months with the aim of attracting 20 local people to fill voluntary roles with employers across the district, including MHA.

The association is also inviting companies, public sector bodies and third sector organisations to become partners in the scheme by offering volunteer posts which require between two and 20 hours per week.

The Xperience Volunteering Project seeks to boost the employability and skills levels of volunteers, whilst delivering productivity benefits to partners by providing additional staff.

Registration and induction of volunteers will be carried out by MHA staff, with the association also offering to cover expenses such as travel.

The main demand from volunteers so far is for administrative and customer-facing roles.

The project was devised by MHA community partnerships and investment manager Nas Hussain, following consultation with residents, potential volunteers and service providers.

He said: “More than three million people regularly volunteer in countless different roles across the country, resulting in a social return estimated at between £23 billion and £57 billion per year.

“Volunteers are able to develop their workplace skills, broaden their social network and make a positive contribution to community wellbeing.

“Meanwhile, employers gain new, highly-motivated staff who want to do well. Many will have the potential and desire to stay on a remunerated basis, negating the need for what can be an expensive and laborious recruitment process.

“Bradford and Keighley have no shortage of people simply requiring the opportunity to show what they can do. The Xperience Volunteering Project can be their chance to shine.”

Lee Bloomfield, MHA chief executive, said the scheme would link in with the association’s overarching commitment to engage with the local community.

He said: “The level of untapped potential I see across Bradford district is immense, particularly amongst young people.

“Through XVP, Manningham Housing Association has already begun the process of creating workplace opportunities for volunteers in our head office in the city centre and is liaising with partner organisations to create several more.

“But we want to encourage new partners to join us in this effort and hope that many will do so."

Barrington Billings, MHA chairman, added: “This scheme forms an important part of our Community Investment Strategy and enables the association to take a lead once again in our determination to become a key place-shaper in our neighbourhoods."

Employers willing to become partners in the scheme and individuals keen to be volunteers are invited to contact Mr Hussain on 01274 377254 or email Nasir.Hussain@manninghamha.co.uk.