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 gain new experiences and develop new skills and confidence while meeting new people and spending time doing something worthwhile and rewarding.

Who can volunteer?

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

A core part of our mission is of course to support young people aged 14-24, those who may be NEET, economically inactive or at risk of becoming so.

However we welcome people of all ages to volunteer with us. Whether you’re from the community space/surrounding area we’re working in and wish to help out, or one of our partners looking to spend some time volunteering, we’d love to hear from you.


What time commitment are VIY looking for?

Flexibility is in our DNA. We provide bite-sized volunteering opportunities, with no long-term commitments – other than committing as best you can to the project(s) you’ve agreed to support.

Do I need to bring equipment or PPE?

We will be providing you with all the personal protective equipment you need, including coveralls. However, please wear comfortable clothes and sturdy shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty!

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, 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 not required for those volunteering with volunteers for up to two days maximum.

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.

Am I insured to volunteer with you?

Yes.  All our projects are covered by our insurance policies.

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 the following channels:

  • Instagram / Facebook / Twitter: @viyproject
  • LinkedIn: /volunteerityourself
  • VIY brand hashtag: #SomethingConstructive
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 volunteer?

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?

VIY can provide you with a generic reference which confirms that you volunteer with us, the name of your role and the date you started volunteering.  We will usually only do this for volunteers who have been with us for 6 months or longer.  If you would like a reference please email the VIY Project Manager you’ve worked with the most.

Can I claim benefits while volunteering?

Please check the Department of Work and Pensions website for advice.

What precautions do VIY have in place for Covid?

All government guidelines are adhered to for sites and if applicable the following are put in place:

o   VIY will carry out Risk Assessment

o   Covid stations will be set up

o   Daily site checklists followed/completed

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.