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York is recognized as a city that elevates and supports citizen engagement and volunteerism. The city offers a broad range of volunteering opportunities to its citizens, from looking after green areas to mentoring fellow residents. York makes it possible for people of all ages and backgrounds to volunteer in the city to help others, develop their own skills, and gain new experiences.

The city is at the start of its journey to becoming an asset-based place that focuses on citizen's abilities, rather than their inabilities. With this approach in mind, York plans to build strong and resilient communities by harnessing the untapped skills of its people through its active citizen engagement and volunteerism programs.

York has been a member of the Cities of Service coalition since 2016.

Corporate Director of Health, Housing, and Adult Social Care Martin Farran

Martin Farran has over 30 years of experience working in social care in both the voluntary and statutory sectors. Currently serving as the director of adult services in City of York Council and previously having served as the executive director for communities at Barnsley Council, his vision is to have future health and social care and community services that improve people’s quality of life, health, and well-being based on personalisation and self-directed support. His ethos is very much about building on people’s abilities – not inabilities; an asset-based approach.

Head of Commissioning Joe Micheli

As Head of Commissioning for Early Intervention, Prevention, and Community Development at City of York Council, Joe Micheli leads the early intervention, prevention, and community development programs in the city, including Local Area Coordination. Micheli previously worked as the head of service for stronger communities at Barnsley Council for 17 years, with responsibility for the development of the Council’s area arrangements and the Council’s Cities of Service program, which mobilizes volunteers to address local challenges. Previous roles have included head of social inclusion and lead on neighborhood renewal.

Director of Development Sue Collins

Sue Collins is Director of Development at York CVS, a social action organisation in the north of England. She has always supported citizens having their say and getting involved in shaping community services. This ethos has driven Sue throughout her career, from working as Operations Director for Independent Living Services to setting up U.K. wide volunteering projects, and as a lead expert on long term care costs. Her expertise spans the voluntary and statutory sectors, including health and social care. Sue is a Trustee at IDAS (Independent Domestic Abuse Services) in York.