Volunteering - frequently asked questions

Find answers to the most common questions about volunteering.

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Who can volunteer?

Anyone can be a volunteer, regardless of level of experience or expertise. The main things we look for in our volunteers are enthusiasm and a positive attitude.

We offer a variety of volunteering opportunities to suit your interests and work around your other commitments. Some of our opportunities may require you to have further checks (such as DBS checks) - if this is the case, you will be notified of this on the role description.

Why do people volunteer?

If COVID has taught us anything, it is that when it matters, we come together and make a difference. Volunteers make a positive impact in their local communities and, although it can seem a little bit daunting or overwhelming to think about giving your time to volunteer - especially with our busy lives – it can reap enormous benefits, both personally and professionally.

Some of the reasons why people want to volunteer are to:

  • find something that fits around their current job and it may be completely different to what they do
  • gain work experience that will help them get back on the career ladder
  • take up a volunteer opportunity that can fit around caring responsibilities
  • gain extra experience that can help students improve their career prospects

It doesn't matter what your situation is, there will be something for you.

What to consider when choosing a volunteering opportunity?

When trying to find that perfect match, you want to make sure that it is something you will enjoy and can do. Make sure when you are searching for your next volunteering opportunity you consider the following:

  • What skills can you bring to a volunteer role and what do you think you will be good at?
  • What community initiatives are important to you and is there a cause you are passionate about?
  • How much time can you commit to a role? - This will determine the types of roles you may consider applying for.
  • Do you prefer a more upfront role or behind the scenes? - Again, this will determine the types of roles you may consider applying for.

A volunteering role should be both fun and fulfilling, so consider what opportunities might best suit you.

What are the benefits of volunteering?

Meeting new people

By dedicating your time to being a volunteer, you can:

  • expand your network, make new friends and boost your social skills
  • strengthen your ties to your community and increase your sense of belonging. It can also increase your knowledge making it easier to find resources and activities for you and your family.
  • meet likeminded people with similar interests

Staying happy and healthy

Volunteering can help to:

  • make you feel better and happier
  • provide a sense of direction and purpose in your life by keeping you mentally stimulated, so you can take your mind of other worries
  • combat stress, anxiety, and depression by providing you with meaningful connections and a good support system
  • gain a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction by giving you a sense of pride and increasing your self-confidence

Having fun

By volunteering you can:

  • spend time doing activities you are genuinely interested in and support
  • meet new people and expand your social network
  • do something outside of work or family life which can help to relieve stress

Improving your career prospects

By participating in volunteering, you can:

  • gain a wide range of new skills or advance skills you already have which can help to advance your career
  • use the volunteering activities as good examples for job interviews
  • show that you have interests outside of your degree, education, or job - this can help to set you apart from other candidates by having different interview answer examples
  • try out new career option and gain experience in a new field

Your information and fair processing

See our Fair processing notice for volunteers on how we'll use your information that you provide to us.