A MEN’S mental health charity was forced to operate on an emergency basis due to a volunteer shortage.

Men Matter was shut the majority of last week after it was unable to continue with its scheduled group activities because of a lack of staff and volunteers available at the last minute.

Speculation was rife among the community as to why the service, which is based in Drumchapel, was only able to accept emergency referral cases.

However, charity chiefs confirmed the shortage had come about last-minute prompting staff to make the difficult choice to focus only on those needing crisis support.

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Peter Divers, who serves on the charity board, said: “We never actually closed completely but we were only dealing with emergency situations because we were short of volunteers for a variety of reasons.

“We had to prioritise emergency cases because we still had a good few of them coming in.

“All our staff are good just now Covid-19 wise, but we are in need of some more volunteers now.”

The charity is operating under strict coronavirus safety protocols in a bid to keep staff and users safe.

However, a number of lockdowns, quarantine changes and social distancing regulations have placed difficulties on the service – while the number of men reaching out for help as a result of the pandemic continues to climb.

Last week proved particularly challenging as more and more emergency cases flooded in without the manpower to tackle it.

The situation has prompted the board to put out a fresh call for volunteers while it pursues plans to bring more staff on board.

Peter added: “We’re always on the lookout for more volunteers and we’re always trying to bring things together for more paid staff because you can’t beat having a commitment with them.

“As we keep saying, we’re not medical professionals but we’re guys with lived experience so anyone who feels that they can join us should absolutely get in touch.”

Normal services have since resumed at the charity’s Drumchapel Road centre, however, as the pandemic continues to rage on, staff are hopeful for more support to cover any further disruption.

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Anyone who feels they could provide support to the charity and the men seeking help there can contact staff.

Potential volunteers are urged to reach out via the Men Matter website or social media channels.

Staff will contact anyone who reaches out to assess suitability and determine how the individual could get involved.

Peter added: “We’re always, always hoping to get more volunteers in the door so, I really hope people will come forward this year and help us to help more people because we’re just getting busier and busier.”