What benefits are there to volunteering with you?

You will be part of a passionate and supportive team, helping to make a real difference to the lives of young people and the community spaces we are renovating.

You will have opportunities to share your skills and experience, helping to inspire and develop the next generation of tradespeople. Many of our Mentors learn new skills and build confidence in different trades/environments, while meeting new people and spending time doing something worthwhile and rewarding.

Who can volunteer?

There are no real limits to who can volunteer with us.

We will provide expenses and all reasonable support to welcome the widest possible range of people to volunteer with us.  If you have a passion to share your skill set* while supporting young people in your community, we would like to hear from you.

*For some roles/projects, specific skill sets may be required.

Are there paid roles available with VIY?

Should you enjoy the work with VIY, volunteering to mentor young people and renovating community spaces, there are also paid roles available to support our work on a regular basis in our core regions as a VIY Trade Mentor.

Please speak to VIY Mentor Manager Karen about this if you are interested, before or after your initial volunteering role with us, via karen@teamviy.com.

How does the recruitment process work – will I have to attend an interview?

Once we have received your expression of interest we will contact you to discuss the role, your relevant skill set and interest.

Should the role be suitable and of interest then we would request a registration form to be completed and returned.

Prior to joining a project and dependent upon the role we would send for your referees and undertake an online Disclosure and Barring (DBS) check (volunteers for up to two days max. are excluded from this requirement and will be supervised by DBS-checked adults at all times whilst on a VIY site).

Do I need a DBS check?

United Kingdom legislation and guidance relating to the welfare of children has as its core principle that the welfare of children and young people must be the paramount consideration. VIY fully supports this principle and therefore requires that people who are working with our young people, or the personal details of young people, for two days or more to pass a DBS check. This is to ensure that children and young people’s welfare is safeguarded.

A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check is required for those wishing to be:

A Trade Skills Mentor (volunteers for up to a maximum of two days are excluded from this requirement and will be supervised by DBS-checked adults at all times whilst on a VIY site)

An Awards Assessor

What support will I receive?

As a volunteer you will have VIY’s Mentor Manager as a point of contact to help you join the team, with induction and training, including safeguarding and site safety.

Regional support will be provided through the Project Manager and the Lead Mentor on your project site.

Your Project Manager will help you with any expenses or questions you may have relating to the project you will be volunteering on.

Will I need to provide my own tools?

We ask that our Trade Mentors bring their own work specific tools while VIY provide the necessary equipment for the young people joining the project each day.

Am I insured to volunteer with you?

Yes.  All our projects are covered by our insurance policies.  We ask that our Trade Mentors share a copy of their public liability when completing the registration documentation.

If you are driving a vehicle to the site you are volunteering at or driving between sites please check with your insurance company that you are insured.

Can I take photos on a project?

Volunteers should not take photos or record site activity as a volunteer.  Lead Mentors may be requested to carry out case studies/take photographs as part of their role with the relevant permissions in place and the support and guidance of VIY.

You may ask a Lead Mentor to take a photo of you and/or your colleagues in your capacity as volunteers on site, but without young people present in those photographs.

We have strict media consent procedures in place according to our Safeguarding Policy which must be adhered to protect all working on the project.

If consent is given for you to take and share photographs online, please do tag us in your posts on our social channels – you’ll find our details on the left hand side of this page.

How old do I have to be to volunteer?

VIY Trade Mentors must be 18 and above, however we have other opportunities for anyone younger wishing to volunteer. This is in addition to the bulk of our work towards our mission to boost young people’s trade skills through volunteering and work experience opportunities.

I am not from the UK, can I still volunteer?

You can still volunteer if you already have the right to work in the UK.  This includes if you are an EU EEA citizen.

Non-EU nationals generally need a work permit in order to volunteer and it is your responsibility to check the terms of your visa or entry clearance conditions before applying to be a volunteer. You may need to do this with the UK Border Agency.

I have a criminal record, can I still volunteer?

Yes, each potential volunteer will be assessed on a case by case basis.  We will ask you to disclose any previous convictions as part of the application process and may require you to undertake a DBS check before you commence volunteering.

If I don’t have experience of working with young people can I still apply?

While having experience of teaching/mentoring young people or having previously worked with apprentices is an advantage, it’s not essential.

The qualities we look for in mentors and volunteers are:

  • Reliability
  • Ability to relate to and empathise with young people and their aspirations
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, especially listening skills
  • Ability to be non-judgemental, self-aware, patient, understanding, flexible, positive and supportive in all situations
  • Ability to challenge own assumptions and negativity

The VIY team will be on hand to guide and support you in your role, including briefing on child protection, safeguarding and site safety before you arrive at a project.

Can I get a reference?

As appropriate, we can provide a written reference after you have been volunteering or working with us for a while. Please note this will be a reference with only factual information.

As you know, clients and projects in construction can change course at any time for many different reasons – flexibility is in VIY’s DNA so please keep this in mind.