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12 Month (August to end of July)

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If you are joining after August, please choose the month you are joining in below. The full year membership runs from August to the end of July the following year.

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COFEPOW Vacancies

COFEPOW is a charity run by volunteers, as such, from time to time we have some vacancies.  Would you like to volunteer a few hours of your time by helping us to remember our FEPOWs?  All of the these posts are of great importance to COFEPOW, either to its’ running or the continuing quest for information. Please give some thought as to how you could help!

National Archives Volunteers

Photographers for the national archives

Members will be aware that for a number of years COFEPOW has been building a master FEPOW list and producing copies of Liberation Questionnaires (LQ) completed by service personnel at the end of the war in the Far East.

There are 96 File boxes at the National Archives at Kew containing FEPOW’s files, an estimated 58,000 personnel of which an estimated 30,000 completed an LQ.  None of the LQs have been officially digitised. COFEPOW has permission from Kew to photograph the LQs. Those that have already been photographed and processed have been added to the COFEPOW website.

There are 8 file boxes yet to be searched and LQs photographed and a few other boxes to be checked for where some names have not been assessed.  We are so close to completing the process after more than 10 years.

For the last five or so years, only one volunteer, member Ivor Watson (no relation) has been going to Kew three or four times a year and taking images of LQs for as long as his camera battery allowed!

He has forwarded them to me and then members - Valerie Rodgers, Jane and Roland Stuart helped by converting the camera image number to the name of the FEPOW, which then enables Guy Metcalfe-Hume, Trustee and Webmaster, to upload them to the website.

Sadly, as we all know, March 2020 changed the world.  Along with all the adversity the public were faced with, the project was suspended as Kew closed.  We are now finding a new normal is evolving and, freedoms are returning, enabling us to plan future actions.  Kew is re-opening soon, however, there will be restrictions on its opening hours and the number of items available. We understand each item has to be sanitised after use.

We are asking for help from members and are looking for volunteers willing to visit Kew to help with photographing LQs.  Ivor will continue to do this long running task but, the restrictions being imposed at Kew will prevent him covering the numbers required.

We are so close to completing the LQ project and really need the help of additional members for the final phase - COFEPOW would be so grateful for any help you can give.

Paul Watson is heading up the project so, If you are interested and would like to know more, please feel free to contact him by email- paulwatson2241@gmail.com.

Download vacancy doc

National Event Coordinator

The recently appointed new National Events Co-ordinator has informed the trustees that,having volunteered early in 2021 to take on the role, is now unable to continue further and has tendered his resignation accordingly to the board of trustees in early January 2022.

 

The post is therefore vacant again and applications are invited to fill the role from suitably committed members who wish to help the COFEPOW charity fulfill its annual event calendar.

 

Chris Wills,former and now temporarily re-installed National Event Co-ordinator, had announced plans to retire from the role in 2019, and was scheduled to step down after the 75th Anniversary commemoration of VJ-Day in 2020. With the turmoil caused by the Covid pandemic however, the event was postponed until August 2021, and so Chris agreed to stay on to help the charity through this difficult period.

 

Having been in the role for 16 years, Chris felt it was time to encourage other members to take up the position and bring fresh impetus to the charity’s events. Although two new members had accepted the challenge, both decided they could not proceed for varying reasons. Therefore, the position is once again vacant.

 

If you would like to be considered for this highly-rewarding role within COFEPOW, there are one or two characteristics it would be an advantage for you to possess:  

  • You will need to be an organised, methodical and enthusiastic individual.
  • You will be comfortable speaking and negotiating with people from all backgrounds and levels.
  • You will need to be diplomatic whilst possessing a degree of tenacity.
  • You won’t necessarily need any experience,but will need to be imaginative and able to give up a little of your time through the year and keen to help members enjoy their participation.
  • On a more pedestrian level, you will need to have access to a computer.

         

There are three main annual events which will require time commitment from you, as well as an ability to encourage others within the association to help, both prior to, and during their occurrence.

 

The three are:

  1. The AGM and Service for VJ-Day which occurs around the 15th August each year at the National Memorial Arboretum.
  2. The COFEPOW weekend away, held at a seaside hotel in October each year.
  3. Remembrance Sunday at the NMA in November.

 

In previous years, the charity has also organised extra services every five years at the NMA on the 15th February, to commemorate notable anniversaries, such as the fall of Singapore. These events mean a great deal to COFEPOW members in ensuring remembrance. COFEPOW would prefer anyone who takes on this role,therefore, to be willing to demonstrate true commitment.  

         

If you are, or know someone who might be interested and feel that you/they may have the organisational skills or is/are willing to learn them for this significant role, you may like to have an informal chat to see what’s involved. If so, please contact Chris Wills on 0121 244 7263 or by email: chriswills@blueyonder.co.uk.