Volunteering opportunities list

  • Join the team helping to guide this well established local charity 21 March 2017
    Trustee / CommitteeNo5 Youth Counselling and Information Service

    No5 has been supporting children and young people in Reading and the surrounding area since 1971. We are a community- based organisation with all counselling sessions provided by fully trained volunteer counsellors. Our volunteers come from all walks of life and backgrounds but all share a commitment to supporting children and young people.

    We are seeking new volunteers to join our trustee board. Trustees work alongside a small group of staff in guiding the charity, ensuring its continuing good governance and effective practice.

    We a particularly keen to hear from potential trustees who would also be interested in:

    • Assisting our Fundraising Officer with organising fundraising events
    • networking
    • publicising No5 Young People’s work locally
    • undertaking basic research to feed into our funding applications.
  • Help our coach run these light hearted matches and kick about sessions 17 March 2017
    Sports coachingSport in Mind

    Sport In Mind are looking for volunteers for our  football sessions! You will be helping the coach run the light hearted matches and kick about sessions.

    No previous experience required but as long as you are willing to join in, perhaps help with refereeing at times or organising the teams as well as playing yourself!

    The sessions are designed for those with mental health problems so an understanding of this would be important.

    We look forward to adding you to our ever growing volunteer team!

    Interested? Find out a little more about volunteering with Sport in Mind, read David’s story.


  • Organise events to help people reduce waste! 16 March 2017
    Coordination / ProjectsTransition Town ReadingRG1

    Repair Cafe is a monthly event where members of the public can come along to get help to repair any items (electronics, electrical, mechanical goods, clothing, computers, tools and more). A team of volunteers help guests repair items. Where possible the guests are involved in carrying out / learning about the repair of the items. The events are free but we encourage donations. We also offer tea coffee and homemade cake for donations.

    During 2017 the new volunteer(s) would support the existing coordinators, who are planning to step down at the end of the year due to other commitments.

    It is currently all one role, but in this description we have split it into three areas in case a team of people would prefer to run the project together.

    Community venue coordination

    • Identify communities and venues where Repair Cafe could run.
    • Liaise with community organisations who would like a repair cafe
    • Book venues
    • Plan the programme of events and venues for the year ahead
    • Manage the budget for Repair Cafe


    • Develop posters and flyers, both general and event specific where appropriate and ensure they are displayed in the most appropriate places for each event.
    • Engage with community organisations hosting events (and other relevant organisations in the neighbourhood of the event) to ensure they promote the events as well.
    • Set up a Facebook event and promote through as wide a range of online channels as possible. (we have a list of regular places but you may know of others)
    • Manage the Repair Cafe Facebook page

    Volunteer management

    • Recruit and introduce new volunteers to repair cafe
    • Communicate with volunteers leading up to events to ensure we have enough volunteers
    • Manage the volunteer Facebook page to engage with volunteers
    • Organise meetings to update volunteers and involve everyone in decision making
    • Organise one or two volunteer socials per year

    Attendance at events – at each event we have one or two non-repairers (usually the coordinator) there to welcome guests and also support the volunteers by ensuring they have refreshments, take breaks and anything else they need. This would be a role probably taken on by all coordinators if there was a team.

    Baking for each event is a role the coordinators have taken on – a nice extra but definitely not essential! 🙂

  • Do your bit to support the armed services and their families 16 March 2017
    SupportSoldiers, Sailors and Airmen’s Families Association (SSAFA)RG30

    SSAFA – the Armed Forces charity is seeking volunteer Caseworkers in Reading.

    Caseworkers provide social and welfare assistance to those who have served or are serving in the Armed Forces and their families. Volunteer Caseworkers offer practical, emotional and financial support to meet individual needs.

    Caseworkers visit people in their own homes to help assess the needs of those seeking support from SSAFA. Caseworkers then approach service and civilian charities, identified through our extensive database and in discussion with fellow Caseworkers, allowing access to funds for individuals in appropriate circumstances.

    The requests for help we receive are very diverse, from access to funds to buy new furniture to sourcing start-up money to launch a enterprise, so there is plenty of variety in the role.

    Good people skills are essential and a knowledge of IT will be useful.

    Interested? Take a look at how people just like you are doing their bit to support the services in communities across the UK HERE.

  • Join the Biodiversity Action Team! 15 March 2017
    Conservation / RestorationThe Conservation Volunteers Reading

    Our Biodiversity Action Team offers a programme of one day conservation volunteering opportunities. As well as tackling projects that help to protect and enhance our biodiversity, most of out activities also help to mitigate the effects of climate change or help to improve access or interpretation of green spaces, to enable people to enjoy them more. The team carries out a wide range of activities such as managing woodlands, restoring heath lands, hedge laying. improving public access (via path, step, fence, stile and boardwalk construction and maintenance) caring for community garden, planting hedges and trees; the list is nearly endless!

    Where we do it:
    The team works across Berkshire and sometimes neighbouring counties: on sites ranging from country parks to small pockets of woodland and local green spaces. Most sessions are carried out on behalf of county, district and parish councils, schools and other conservation or community organisations.

    Do you need to be fit?
    We only ask that you have a basic level of physical fitness. We try to provide a range of different actives to suit all sorts of people on our projects. In fact keeping fit is one of the main reasons people volunteers with us. If there’s anything especially difficult or unusual about the work we’re planning to do or the location where we’re doing it we mention it in the task description on our website. Let us know if you have any concerns before the event and we will try to help.

    What to bring with you?
    We’ll provide you with all the tools and equipment needed, including suitable work gloves. We also provide biscuits and refreshments for tea breaks etc. you will need to provide your own packed lunch; a lot of our work sites are not near any shops. Please do comes prepared for the likely weather conditions on the day and suitable clothes for out door work. We recommend sturdy boots, long sleeved tops and long trousers, with a sun hat if necessary. If you require them, bring along your own insect repellent, sun block, camera, money and personal medication.

    Will I be safe?
    All our projects are run by at least one, fully trained Project Leader and most are suitable for anyone over 16 to attend. Although if you are 16 or 17 you will need permission from a parent or guardian to attend. Our Leaders are first aid trained and are DBS checked. Al our activities are formally risk assessed and we provide the necessary insurance.

    Do I need to know how to do anything?
    You won’t need any special skills to join in, other than a willingness to get involved and have a go. There isn’t an interview process and we don’t ask for a commitment from anyone for more than a day at a time. We provide on-site, informal training and guidance.

    We are always looking for new volunteers and to meet new people so why not give it a try?

    Want to find out a little bit more? Read about Rosie and Jan’s Volunteering ...

  • A fantastic opportunity to gain experience for those with green aspirations 15 March 2017
    Conservation / RestorationThe Conservation Volunteers ReadingRG1

    The Conservation Volunteers is looking for a new project volunteer to join our small team based in central Reading. Volunteers in this role will support us in delivering a range of community and biodiversity focused projects in and around Reading.

    The role will provide experience of leading and supervising teams of volunteers, carrying out practical conservation work on a range of different sites, liaising with land owners and managers, promoting our work and working with partners. Volunteers will have the opportunity to develop a wide range of practical, conservation skills, gained through informal, task based training and by attending in-house and external courses. These will include first aid, preparing risk assessments and project leadership.

    Volunteers will ideally be available for 3 days a week and be able to get to the Reading International Solidarity Centre, a two minute walk from the Oracle Shopping Centre.

    To be considered for these roles you need to live in the area outlined on the map below and be over 21 . You do not need to have any prior experience but do need to be enthusiastic, willing to interact with the team, comfortable working in all weathers and have excellent time keeping and basic computer skills.

    A full driving licence held for two years would be an advantage but is not essential.

    Interested but want to know a little more? Take a look at Jan and Rosie’s Volunteering Experience Story 


  • Can you help our pre-school team with administrative tasks 15 March 2017
    AdministrationNewbery Lodge PlaygroupRG31

    Newbery Lodge Pre-School in Tilehurst is a small setting within its own building in the grounds of Arthur Newbery Park. We are one of the longest running pre-schools in Reading having formed in 1974.

    We are looking for someone to help the pre-school team with administrative tasks i.e letter writing, emails, filing, purchasing, general paperwork and assist with keeping the pre-school clean and tidy for the children to enjoy.

    Some of these tasks can be done in your own time at home to suit your availability providing you have access to a computer. Whilst in the pre-school building a company laptop will be provided.

  • You can make a difference by offering companionship and conversation 15 March 2017
    Befriending / VisitingSue Ryder

    Living with a life-limiting condition can be lonely and isolating for our patients and their families.

    Our befrienders help by making weekly visits to provide support. This may involve:

    • Offering companionship and conversation.
    • Sharing in an interest or activity.
    • Listening and offering emotional support.
    • Taking someone out on short trips.
    • Helping with small practical tasks.
    • Providing carers with a break.

    We can’t change the outcome, but we can change the journey.

  • Help us to improve the lives of people affected by cancer 15 March 2017
    FundraisingMacmillan Cancer Support

    Macmillan Cancer Support needs volunteers to collect donations, in and around Reading.

    Macmillan Cancer Support provides practical, emotional and financial support to people affected by cancer and their carers. You can help Macmillan deliver this support.

    If you can help us collect donations from the public in supermarkets, etc., for a maximum of 2 hours per month, please get in touch.

  • Help promote our work whilst making new friends and having fun 13 March 2017
    FundraisingNaomi House Children’s Hospice

    We are looking for Ambassadors to promote the work that Naomi House and Jacksplace do.

    Our Ambassadors help with a variety of roles, from giving presentations to schools, clubs and groups, collecting cheques from places that have fundraised for us, helping with changing the collection pots in shops and sourcing new ones.

    Its a great way to raise the awareness of what we do at the hospice whilst making new friends and having fun!

  • Could you help others to learn? 10 March 2017
    Learning support / MentoringNew Directions

    New Directions are looking for volunteers to help their learners in the classroom meet their potential.

    Do you: Want to give something back to the community? Have good levels of qualification in English, Maths and IT? Want to have a positive impact on someone’s life?

    Can you: Encourage learners to reflect on their work? Encourage learners’ independence? Assist learners with a disability or learning difficulty in practical ways? Give learners confidence in their abilities?

    Applicants will attend 2 half day induction sessions. These sessions will include online training covering: safeguarding, Prevent and health and safety. During these sessions learning styles, support techniques etc will be discussed and activities will take place.

    You could be volunteering in any of these areas that lead to a qualification:

    English & Maths: Entry levels up to GCSE.

    ESOL: Entry to level 1.

    Learning for work: Levels 1 to 3, NVQs and diplomas.

    There will also be opportunities to support in community learning classes that do not lead to a qualification. Some of these courses are dedicated supported learning where volunteers are highly valued

    Interested but want to know a little more? Read about the experiences of New Directions volunteers Stephen and Roger

    Volunteer-Stories-Snap-shot-Stephen Volunteer-Stories-Snap-shot-Roger

  • Help us grow our services and maintain the smooth running of our charity 7 March 2017
    Trustee / CommitteeRidgeline TrustRG6

    Ridgeline Trust helps people suffering from mental and/or physical difficulties, learning difficulties, or other special needs. Through our beautiful garden we aim to help people through regular professionally run sessions to learn new skills, regain lost skills, and improve social skills in order to regain confidence and self esteem.

    We are seeking to increase our Board of Trustees in order help grow our services and maintain the smooth running of the Charity. This is an exciting time for someone to join our organisation to help us drive forward and realise our plans for the future.

    We are looking for people who have an interest in our work and would like to be involved in the running of our Charity.

    The role to the Trustee includes, but is not limited to:

    • Setting and defining goals and values, developing strategy and our policies
    • Ensuring the aims of the Charity are effectively fulfilled
    • Evaluating performance against agreed targets
    • Promoting and protecting the interests and reputation of the Charity
    • Ensuring that all documentation which Ridgeline Trust is required by law to have in place is prepared and agreed by the Board of Trustees
    • Ensuring that Ridgeline Trust complies at all times with relevant legislation and regulations
    • Ensuring accountability and maintaining proper financial controls
    • Supporting the operational management of the organisation

    Post holders will be expected to attend monthly Board Meetings which are normally held on Monday evenings. In addition there may be a small number of other meetings including the Annual General Meeting.

  • Make a real difference to the lives of refugees and asylum seekers! 7 March 2017
    SupportBritish Red Cross – Thames Valley AreaRG1

    If you are compassionate and sensitive, you can make a real difference to the lives of refugees and asylum seekers!

    The Red Cross has a long tradition of providing practical and emotional support to vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers in the UK. Our Refugee Support work with thousands of beneficiaries every year in around fifty different towns and cities enabling people to draw upon their own strengths to withstand crisis and rebuild their lives.
    We support refugees and asylum-seekers in a range of ways, from providing emergency provisions for those facing severe hardship to giving advice on how people can access services to which they are entitled. These services are provided in a safe and welcoming environment. None of this important work would be possible without the skill and enthusiasm of volunteers helping in a variety of ways.

    The casework volunteer will work one-to-one with vulnerable asylum seekers and refugees to help them access suitable support services.

    Typical tasks include:

    • Providing one to one support to beneficiaries.
    • Undertaking sensitive and comprehensive interviews with service users to assess their needs.
    • Agreeing a plan of action with the beneficiary.
    • Support the beneficiary to access other services, for example from the NHS, legal representatives and Social Services.
    • Offering onward referral to relevant bodies as appropriate.
    • Maintaining effective client records using our data capture system including communicating effectively with the Home Office case owner.
    • Identify and respond appropriately to safeguarding and protection issues with vulnerable clients, including children and vulnerable adults.
    • Working effectively with interpreters.
  • Help us maintain and grow the annual Reading In Bloom 7 March 2017
    Marketing / PRReading in Bloom

    Additional volunteers needed to help us maintain and grow the annual Reading In Bloom.

    Our aim is to encourage individuals and groups who, through their gardening efforts, play an active role in making our town and neighbourhoods beautiful and productive. We do this by running the annual Reading In Bloom competition (which is free to enter).

    We are looking for individuals with marketing and promotional skills or who could be active in approaching businesses for sponsorship, as we rely entirely on donations and grants to survive. Our friendly meetings are once a month on a weekday, early evening.

    Also, if you have horticultural knowledge, why not become one of our judges for one of the many categories of gardens that enter the annual competition. You would need to be available for a day or two in July for this.

    We particularly want to re-vitalise our Schools Challenge to reward schools which are helping children enjoy and learn through gardening. A volunteer who can help co-ordinate this scheme would be very welcome.

  • Play your part in organising this much loved annual community event 7 March 2017
    Trustee / CommitteeReading Town Meal


    Reading Town Meal is a unique celebration of home grown and local food.  It takes place on Saturday 30th September in Forbury Gardens in the centre of Reading.  There will be a delicious free meal, live music, workshops, community groups, family fun and a local producers market,











    The event is organised by a partnership of key stakeholders and volunteers and each member of the steering group generally takes on an area of responsibility.  They are supported in their role by the chair and, from July onward, by the Town Meal Intern.  The role can be shared amongst more than one person where appropriate.  Each role shouldn’t need more than an hour of work a week in the person’s own time, though it would probably be in concentrated periods of time.

    There is a detailed Town meal plan, which outlines the general actions required by each role within a set time frame.  Each member will be expected to complete the actions required and then report back to steering group at the next meeting.

    We are looking to recruit anyone who is happy to help with one of the following roles but especially Volunteers, Publicity and Infotainment.



    Liaise with local producers to coordinate the growing of vegetables and  the collection of produce in September and its transport to Reading College.

    —Stall holders (community)—

    Contact community groups and organisations that support or promote community food growing or wider environment aims in the wider Reading area.

    —Stall holders (local producers)—

    Contact local producers who may want to have a stall at the event and to help identify local producers who may be able to help cover the short fall in produce needed for the Town Meal.   Oversee the admin of booking stalls and completing required forms based on procedures used in previous years.

    This role could include organising:

    • the bands that will provide the back ground music to the day
    • some activities for children
    • any competitions such as baking or pumpkin competitions
    • workshops/debate

    One person may like to take over the responsibility for all these or just one aspect.


    • Develop publicity plan based on last year’s plan
    • Send out press releases, organise photo ops
    • Invite VIPs
    • Ensure website and Facebook pages are kept updated
    • Supervise posters/ flyer design and printing
    • Supervise program design and printing


    • Review job descriptions and number of volunteers needed
    • Design volunteer poster and online advert. Review list of places to advertise. Send publicity to list.
    • Review volunteer registrations form
    • Send out volunteer job descriptions and advertise dates for volunteer briefing meetings
    • Update volunteer data base and keep it up to date
    • Organise volunteer briefing
    • Supervise volunteers on the day, organising breaks, shift changes and expenses.

    —General logistics—

    • Marquee hire
    • Loo hire
    • Refuse
    • Signage
    • Transport/parking
    • Health & safety
    • Equipment for cookery demos, etc.
    • Electrics/water
    • Audio visual
  • We need a Rota Secretary to keep our volunteer service coordinated 7 March 2017
    AdministrationReading SamaritansRG1

    We’re looking for an enthusiastic individual to join our team as a Rota Secretary. You’ll ensure that our listening service rota is filled and you’ll contact our volunteers by phone, email or text to ask them to fill any gaps that remain.

    You’ll need to have good organisational skills, as well as good communication skills and experience of databases.

    Full support and training will be given, and we can reimburse reasonable out of pocket expenses. Initially you’ll carry out the role from our Centre on Cholmeley Road but once trained, you can carry out this role from home if you’d prefer.

    Interested? Want to know more about what it is like to volunteer with Reading Samaritans? Read Karen and Dave’s Volunteering Story


  • Be part of the fight against the UK’s single biggest killer 6 March 2017
    FundraisingBritish Heart Foundation

    We are the nation’s heart charity and the largest independent funder of cardiovascular research. Coronary heart disease is the UK’s single biggest killer but we are leading the fight against it.

    You can help our work and be part of the fight by becoming a volunteer Fundraising Group Leader.

    What will I be doing?

    Responsibility of the Fundraising Group Leader:

    • Lead and coordinate the group in organising fundraising events.
    • Build strong relationships with all members and actively recruit new members.
    • Represent the charity in your community, acting as the face of the BHF.
    • Ensure group activities comply with relevant law and BHF policy.
    • Work alongside your local Fundraising Manager.

    What skills and attributes do I need to have?

    • A leader who enjoys working with others and is a good team player.
    • Diplomacy and the ability to facilitate open discussion.
    • Enthusiasm to run and support fundraising events.
    • Confidence and willing to act as the face of the BHF in your local community.
    • Self-motivation and the ability to motivate others.
    • Good organisational skills.
    • A commitment to the BHF’s values.
  • Help support our local fundraising activities 6 March 2017
    FundraisingBritish Heart Foundation

    We are the nation’s heart charity and the largest independent funder of cardiovascular research. Coronary heart disease is the UK’s single biggest killer but we are leading the fight against it.

    You can help our work and be part of the fight by becoming a volunteer Fundraising Group Member .

    What will I be doing?
    Responsibility of a Fundraising Group Member:

    • Support your local group in organising and running fundraising events.
    • Build strong relationships with all group members and actively recruit new members.
    • Represent the charity in your community, acting as the face of the BHF.
    • Ensure group activities comply with relevant law and BHF policy.
    • Work alongside your local Fundraising Manager.

    What skills and attributes do I need to have?

    • Interpersonal skills and team-work.
    • Enthusiasm to support the organisation and running of fundraising events.
    • Confidence and willing to act as the face of the BHF in your local community.
    • Self-motivation and the ability to motivate others.
    • Reliability and flexibility.
    • A commitment to the BHF’s values.
  • Team Reading – Be part of the team and help keep this 10K run on the right track 21/05/2017 6 March 2017
    StewardingLaunchpad Reading

    This year our key running event is the Royal Berkshire 10K

    We are seeking 20 volunteers to help on the day by hosting a drinks station and helping distribute medals to finishers!

    You will be working as part of a team making sure everything runs smoothly and everyone enjoys the day.

    Complete short registration form HERE to join the team!

    Fancy something a bit more active? We have 20 free spaces for runners who can raise a minimum of £75 for Launchpad, find out more HERE


  • Support our enjoyable badminton sessions 2 March 2017
    Sports coachingSport in MindRG30

    Sport in Mind run various Sports sessions across Berkshire for those with mental health problems.

    Sport and Physical activity have a positive effect on mental wellbeing.

    We are looking for volunteers in Reading to support our coach in running an enjoyable badminton session.

    The role will include :

    • helping participants with forms
    • playing badminton
    • acting as a scorer
    • interacting with participants and other volunteers

    Want to find out more about what it’s like to volunteer with Sport in Mind? Read David’s volunteering story

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