Oxfam plans to double festival stewarding

Oxfam is looking to double its volunteer stewarding programme, expanding into events beyond weekend festivals.

Oxfam stewards in action
Oxfam stewards in action

The charity currently supplies around 5,000 volunteers a year to weekend festivals, raising £1 million for its work fighting global poverty.

It aims to double the operation in the next few years, supplying stewards to day festivals and other music, sporting and community events.

Oxfam has appointed Emma Parkinson as stewarding manager to lead the expansion. She said there is market demand for volunteer stewards: "Our volunteer stewards, who encompass a broad demographic of people from young music fans to professionals and working mothers, are already known in the festival industry for their outstanding level of compassion, care, and commitment and we’re seeing an increasing market for this type of stewarding."

"We also see a great legacy opportunity for volunteering after the 2012 Olympics as the Game Makers programme will help raise awareness around the opportunities and benefits of volunteering at events and will train up hundreds of new volunteers. We hope to encourage these volunteers to continue using the skills they’ve acquired in future years by giving their time to Oxfam Stewarding."

Nearly half of Oxfam’s stewards are over the age of 25 and more than a quarter work at more than one festival a year.

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