Fa la la la la … la la la la!
Hello you lovely people… Our 12 Days of Christmas has kicked off and we will reveal one local volunteering role each day until 12th December. So, here we go…
Day One: Eye Heroes
a. What do we do? Eye heroes is the UK’s first child-led campaign to fight avoidable blindness.
b. What is the role we are recruiting for? Communications Volunteer – We are looking for enthusiastic volunteers who can help us build our presence online through developing our supporter base, creating engaging social media posts, helping write the newsletter, and generally sharing the message about our important work.
c. What is our impact? Each child who attends a workshop will inform, on average, 8 adults and of these, 4 will go for a sight test. This proven method can transcend barriers like language and socio-economic status that can often isolate hard to reach groups. We know that this project is making a difference and with help from communications volunteers, we will be better able to share our impact with others
You can apply for the Eye Heroes Communications Volunteer role on our website here.
Day Two: The British Museum
The British Museum
a. What is the name of your organisation and its mission (why does it exist, what does it aim to do)
The British Museum houses eight million objects from different cultures from all over the world, encompassing two million years of human history and culture. The best way to find out more is by visiting our website – https://www.britishmuseum.org/ .
b. What is the title of the volunteering role(s) that you are recruiting for and a brief description of that role(s)
Volunteers at the British Museum are involved with a wide range of activities, from Front of House activities such as tour guides to Behind the scenes work in our departments. At the moment, due to covid, we are unsure when volunteering will resume on site, or what our exact recruitment needs will be. We are hoping to develop a mailing list of people interested in volunteering, who we can then contact as and when opportunities open up.
c. Why someone would want to volunteer with you? What difference will be made to them, to your organisation and / or the local community. Are there any other benefits to them (such as personal development, alleviating loneliness, something to put on their CV etc
We would hope that there are many reasons someone would want to volunteer at the British Museum- and we love the fact that our volunteers have many different motivations for being part of the team. As one of our volunteers you will get to:
• Meet people from around the world
• Learn about world cultures
• Make new friends
• Share your passion and enthusiasm
• Learn new skills
• Become part of a supportive team and community
• Access to exclusive events and training for volunteers
• Enjoy the Museum and its collection
To express an interest in with volunteering at The British Museum send them an email stating ‘VCC 12 days of Christmas’ in the subject line and they will in touch in the near future with next steps. Timelines are shifting at the moment with Covid-19 so please be patient if you do not hear from them immediately. Thanks very much!
Day Three: University College London Hospital (UCLH)
a. What is the name of your organisation and its mission (why does it exist, what does it aim to do) – At UCLH we embody our trust values of Safety, Kindness, Teamwork and Improving in everything we do. We are committed to delivering top-quality patient care. Volunteers are a very important part of the UCLH team and help us deliver a high quality patient experience and increase our capacity. Volunteers are involved in defined non-clinical roles which add value to the patient experience or give capacity to local teams
b. What is the title of the volunteering role(s) that you are recruiting for and a brief description of that role(s) – Rapid Response Volunteers enable us to respond to need within the hospital whether it is a request from the wards to pick up medication from the pharmacy so a patient can be discharged, or a need to give extra support to a patient with dementia who needs to attend several appointments in different departments. Volunteers provide mealtime support on the wards, and helping with our Discharge Team.
c. Why someone would want to volunteer with you? What difference will be made to them, to your organisation and / or the local community. Are there any other benefits to them (such as personal development, alleviating loneliness, something to put on their CV etc)? – This role allows volunteers to provide crucial support and customer service to some of the most vulnerable people. This role offers a great opportunity to make an impact to wards and their patients in line with their changing needs. Volunteers will gain experience and insight into working within the healthcare sector, including an excellent opportunity for those considering a career in health services or in customer service support roles. References on request, after 6 months and Out of pocket expenses are covered in line with our policy (currently travel is covered to the value of £8.90 for travel expenses and £4.50 for meal expenses per day)
Express your interest in applying as a UCLH Rapid Response Volunteer on our website here.
Day Four: Training Link
Training Link is a charitable organisation that provides free educational course for adults in the local Somers Town community. We have English courses, computers, vocational online courses, a Literacy Project, and internet drop in sessions.
Our aim is help people, many of whom are from difficult backgrounds, re engage in education to help them improve life chances in finding work and an overall better life. We aim to provide a friendly, supportive environment.
During the current lockdown, we are closed,but hope to resume our activities as soon as possible.
We will be looking for volunteers to provide 1 to 1 English lessons for up to two hours a week on our Adult Literacy Project either face to face or online. Volunteering for the project could really make a difference in terms of improving someone’s confidence and ability in speaking English and could really help somebody.
To express an interest in volunteering with Training Link, please contact Chris by email.
Day Five: Kilburn Community Champions
Camden Community Champions has launched! Teams are working in Kilburn, Kentish Town and Regents Park to recruit and engage local residents in creating events and activities that will promote Health & Wellbeing.
The project is looking for organisations who may be interested in working alongside us to support volunteers and deliver training, events, and activities on the following target estates:
- Kilburn Vale
Due to the current Covid issue, much of their work will be taking place online, including their first piece of research.
Express an interest with volunteering as a Community Champion on their website here.
Day Six: The Access Project
Did you know that only 2.5% of young people from the most disadvantaged backgrounds get a place at a university in the top third of the league tables. Without a degree from a top university, they will on average find it harder to get a graduate-level job as an adult & will have a lower income. The Access Project wants to change that.
They are looking for graduates who would be able to tutor a young person in London aged 14-18 for one hour a week to help them to improve their grades and fulfil their potential. Before volunteering with them, they ask you to sign up on their website and find a time that suits you to come to an evening training session and complete the short online safeguarding course.
To tutor at A level, we ask that you have completed a degree in the subject you’ll tutor and to tutor at GCSE we ask that you have an undergraduate degree, and that you have an A level in the subject you’ll tutor.
Express an interest in volunteering with The Access Project on our website here.
Day Seven: Women@TheWell
Women@thewell works tirelessly to improve the lives of women involved in, or at risk of involvement with prostitution.
They are looking to recruit a team of volunteers who will assist our support workers to run a drop in service Monday to Friday between the hours of 10am and 4pm. You can choose between full and half days.
This volunteer role will see you supporting the smooth running of a drop in service – which provides women with access to hot nutritious food, shower facilities and a range of activities run daily.
They need your help now more than ever to ensure the women they support have Covid-safe Winter provision.
Your time will improve the lives of the women they support and ensure that they can run essential services which keep women safe and providing hope and support to exit prostitution.
Volunteers will receive a full and comprehensive induction and ongoing training and support.
This is a wonderful opportunity for someone who would like to gain experience in a women’s organisation and for those who would like to make positive change.
Express an interest in volunteering with women@thewell here on our website.
For more information please email: Volunteering@watw.org.uk
Alternatively phone: Jo Thompson – Volunteer Coordinator: 07538553961
Day Eight: The Simon Community
The Simon Community has been working since 1963 to alleviate the isolation of people sleeping rough, provide a place where they can gain a sense of belonging, and foster the skills they need to move towards independent living. They are a community of homeless people and volunteers living and working together in a spirit of love, acceptance, tolerance and understanding. They aim to reach out to support and campaign for people who are experiencing homelessness, particularly those for whom no other provision exists.
They are looking for volunteers to help deliver outreach services to people experiencing homelessness. As a volunteer, you will work alongside their previously homeless residents and other volunteers, helping to run their services smoothly and efficiently, providing hospitality to those in need. You will serve hot drinks and food to our guests on the street, and while the practical side of our outreach services is key, the sense of community they aim to bring to the streets is just as important. Their regular services provide opportunities for kind, compassionate interactions between guests, residents and volunteers.
Tea runs (6:45-8:30am – Mon/Wed/Fri) – The van is driven to locations in Central London to offer hot drinks and breakfast to guests on the streets.
Evening centre (6-10pm – Tues) – Guests are invited to have a sit down meal indoors, do laundry, and pick items from donated clothes.
Street work (9pm-11:30pm – Mon/Wed/Fri) – Volunteers go out on foot with hot drinks and sandwiches to visit guests where they sleep on the streets.
Soup run (8pm-11pm – Thurs) – The van is driven to locations in Central London to offer soup, sandwiches and hot drinks to guests on the streets.
Street cafe (1-3pm – Sun) – An outdoor cafe is set-up in the courtyard of St Giles-in-the-Fields church, offering food and hot drinks, and the opportunity to have a haircut or borrow from the Quakers’ Homeless Action mobile library.
Express an interest in volunteering with The Simon Community on our website here.
Day Nine: British Heart Foundation
British Heart Foundation is recruiting Volunteer Retail Assistants for their three Camden shops (Camden Town, Kentish Town and Swiss Cottage).
As a retail assistant volunteer you’ll be at the heart of helping run the shop – whether you’re on the shop floor helping customers with sales, or behind the scenes as a stock room assistant processing donations with fellow team members.
This is a flexible retail assistant role where you can try different roles throughout the shop until you find your niche, such as sorting out stock, putting your own stamp on the shop displays or getting trained to serve customers on the till, to name but a few roles.
The shop volunteers are essential to the running of BHF shops – we couldn’t do it without them. Whichever retail assistant role you choose to do, you’ll be part of a small team providing the best possible service and raising funds to help the BHF Beat Heartbreak Forever.
Typical tasks may include:
· Serving customers on the till & providing good all-round customer service
· Promoting campaigns and instore sales to customers
· Working on window and shop displays alongside the Manager
· Sorting donations in the stock room ready for sale, helping run a department
· Helping behind the scenes as a Warehouse Operative to keep the warehouse safe, organised and operating smoothly, including warehouse logistics
· Administration – answering phones & emails, helping with online sales & item research
· Keeping the shop tidy, clean and well organised – some light housekeeping
Express your interest in volunteering with British Heart Foundation on our website here.
Day Ten: Food For All
Food For All is an entirely volunteer-run organisation and depends heavily on the help of lots of amazing volunteers to produce and distribute thousands of meals to the vulnerable every day. If you’re interested in becoming a part of the Food For All initiative, they want to hear from you!
Ways to get involved
There are several ways to get involved as a volunteer for Food For All:
- Preparing & packing meals at their central London kitchen, near Holborn Viaduct
- Delivering meals in your car, on your bike or even riding one of their rickshaws
- Handing out meals at one of their food hubs around London
- Helping with admin tasks at home on your computer
At their kitchen FFA prepares and pack thousands of hot meals every day. Kitchen volunteers are needed each day with food prep, packing and labelling individual meal boxes and cleaning.
Shift timings are as follows:
- 08.00-12.00 Monday-Saturday
- 13.00-17.00 Monday-Thursday only
To learn more about working at the FFA kitchen, please check out their Kitchen Volunteer Page
Sign up as a kitchen volunteer here
Every day FFA delivers meals to other organisations, food banks and community groups who distribute them locally to those they support.
These deliveries require a car, van or rickshaw bike, as they are all bulk deliveries of meals packed into crates.
They also deliver meals to the homes of vulnerable individuals. Meals can be collected from the FFA kitchen or from their Camden Hub in NW1 and delivered by bike or on foot.
Sign up to help with meal deliveries here
Distribution Hubs & On the Street
As well as delivering meals to other organisations and to homes, FFA also hands meals out on the street every day.
They have several distribution hubs set up around London, as well as distributing meals to the homeless regularly around central London, by van or rickshaw. Helping out with these would involve serving meals out directly to those on the street, or bagging up meals to hand out for later.
Sign up to help with meal distribution at hubs and on the street here
Not everyone can be out on the ground preparing and distributing meals. Food For All never wants that to stop keen volunteers from getting involved, wherever they are.
There are a variety of areas you can offer support with, including fundraising, recruiting new volunteers, researching new service partners and general administrative tasks.
Commitment can be as little as 3 hours as a one-off, or if you can commit to a few hours of your time a week, then even better!
No prior experience necessary. All that’s required is a computer, internet and a little knowledge of how to use them.We’ll help you set up with any IT platforms we use to communicate and perform remote tasks.
Sign up as a remote volunteer here
Day 11: C4WS Homeless Project
The C4WS Winter Night Shelter runs every day from the beginning of November to the end of March each year, with a week’s break from 23-30th December when our guests go to Crisis at Christmas. Each evening, overnight and morning shift relies on volunteers to help with set-up, food preparation, making and stripping beds, and providing hospitality to our guests.
30 volunteers are needed to cover both day and night shifts and ideally volunteers will be able to commit to a minimum of one shift per week.
The shift patterns for volunteers are as follows:
Evening: 18.30 – 21.30
Overnight (sleeping shift): 21.00 – 07.30
Morning: 07.00 – 09.00
Being a friendly face for the guests at the shelter and interacting over a meal
Assistance with cooking of meals
Changing bed linen and doing laundry
Basic DBS check
Punctuality and reliability
Show respect and empathy to shelter guests
Be friendly and enthusiastic
New volunteers are required to provide two references, and complete the C4WS Online Volunteer Training, prior to their first shift.
Day 12: Kentish Town Community Centre
Kentish Town Community Centre, based in Busby Place, just off Torriano Avenue, is a vibrant and very popular hub for community activity. The current lockdown has not stopped it remaining open to help the local residents access its foodbank and legal services.
The Centre is looking for a Trustee with finance skills or an accounting background to join the Board as Treasurer.
The Board meets six times a year (or more if necessary). You would be expected to liaise on an ad hoc basis with their book-keeper, Abiola, and very lively Centre Manager, Sarah.
Interested? Then pick up the phone and give Sarah a call on 020 7482 3212 (Sarah is in the office Wednesday, Thursday and Friday each week). Want a bit more info first? Check out the KTCC website to see all the good work that they do, and that you would be supporting as a trustee.