Josh- Gallery Cafe Volunteer in Norfolk

We believe that having a physical or learning disability shouldn’t prevent anyone from volunteering. We work in partnership with local organisations and businesses to help disabled people actively volunteer (via supported volunteering if necessary) and contribute to their community. We offer support placements in many different work environments such as retail, gardening, and hospitals.

We also run flexible training and skills courses, that focus on skills such as socialising, travelling independently, keeping healthy and safe, and many more. Our programmes help to improve social and employability skills, help participants gain confidence and ultimately change lives.

We firmly believe that having a disability should not be a barrier to participating in sport and leading a healthy and active lifestyle. We support the English Federation of Disability Sport #TogetherWeWill campaign and are working with EFDS later this year to deliver Get Out Get Active – an exciting new initiative to boost activity numbers of people with disability getting active in their community.

Volunteering Matters are active members of the Disability Action Alliance a cross sector network of organisations committed to making a positive difference to the lives of disabled people.  Alongside DRUK (Disability Rights UK), we chair the Volunteering sub-group of the Alliance – a group of members working together to make volunteering accessible for disabled people.  In 2014 we launched the Volunteer Charter which sets out the core principles that the group believe organisations should adopt when recruiting and working with volunteers that are disabled people. The Charter already has over 120 organisations pledged to it.

supported volunteering active volunteering barnet preparing to volunteer course

Active Volunteering Barnet

Active Volunteering Barnet is a project which empowers adults with a disability, or long-term physical or health condition, to capitalise on their skills, interests and goals for the future.

Active Volunteering Essex

Active Volunteering Essex is a project to support individuals with a learning disability who want to volunteer, but feel anxious about volunteering completely independently.

Assisted Gardening Scheme

The Assisted Gardening Scheme offers affordable help to tenants struggling to manage their gardens, creating manageable spaces for people to enjoy and feel safe in.

Beyond Transitions

Beyond Transitions is a volunteer project based in Torfaen, South Wales, set up to support young disabled people through their transition into adulthood.
choices full time volunteers independent living project

Choices

Choices offers independent living support to a wide range of people, including people with disabilities and learning difficulties, older people and families.
Futures Volunteer Mentors cutting trees

FUTURES

The FUTURES project enables young people with additional support needs to access communities and realise their potential through the support of community and peer volunteers.
Get Out Get Active GOGA

Get Out Get Active

Get Out Get Active (GOGA) is a UK wide programme, funded by Spirit of 2012 that aims to encourage disabled and non-disabled people to take part in and enjoy activity together.

Give More Get More

Give More Get More aims to support young disabled people transition from full time education to the next stage in their life through support from an older volunteer and a person-centred plan.
headspace peer mentors june 2016

Headspace

Headspace is a service which helps people make positive changes to their lives. Our programmes enable participants to set meaningful, realistic goals.

Inspiring young disabled people

Our young disabled peoples’ work shadowing programme matches young disabled people with businesses and individuals who mirror the young person’s aspirations.

Newport Support Partnership

Volunteering Matters is working with other experienced organisations as part of the Newport Support Partnership to provide help for isolated people and carers living in the Newport area.

Vocal

Vocal is a project that provides personalised supported volunteering opportunities for individuals with a learning disability.

Volunteer Centre Newcastle

Volunteer Centre Newcastle acts as a connector between people and communities with a database of opportunities across the city.

S.A.F.E – Peer Mentor Volunteer (Gwent)

The SAFE (‘Sexual Awareness for Everyone’) project running across Gwent will help improve the personal safety and good sexual health of young women (aged 16 to 35) with learning difficulties through peer led workshops, one to one peer support and through the production and distribution of a SAFE card.

Get Out get Active – Activator (Thanet)

Get Out Get Active (GOGA) is an exciting new programme that supports disabled and non-disabled people to enjoy being active together. Funded by Spirit of 2012, the programme is focused on getting some of the UK’s least active people moving more through fun and inclusive activities.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Wells-next-the-sea)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Aylsham)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Docking)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Wymondham)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Marshland St James)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Hingham)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Harleston)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Mundesley)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Caister-on-Sea)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Gorleston-on-Sea)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Great Yarmouth)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Cromer)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Norwich)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Fakenham)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Dereham)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (Downham Market)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Newport Support Partnership – Volunteer Befriender

Newport Support Partnership is working with local partners to provide help for isolated people and carers living in the Newport area - specifically in this role, to befriend isolated members of the community.

Active Volunteering – Volunteer Mentor (Barnet)

Active Volunteering Barnet is a project which empowers adult volunteers with a learning disability, physical disability, sensory impairment or long term physical or mental health condition to engage in volunteering roles.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Swaffham)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Dereham)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Norwich)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Diss)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Attleborough)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Thetford)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Brandon)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Hunstanton)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Downham Market)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Cars4Carers – Volunteer Driver (Pembrokeshire)

Many people rely on our volunteer drivers to help them do everyday things that most of us take for granted. A simple trip to the shops can be complicated, if not impossible, for some people without the support of a volunteer driver.

Assisted Gardening Scheme – Volunteer (Bristol)

Volunteers have the opportunity to get creative and transform green spaces into fresh, colourful, blooming gadrens. This is a fantasic way to support and befriend local residents who are no longer able to manage their own gardens.

Active Volunteering – Supported Volunteer (Barnet)

Disabled volunteers have the chance to capitalise on their skills, interests, and goals for the future. We work in partnership with local organisations and businesses to provide volunteer placements in diverse work environments such as retail, gardening and hospitals.

Futures – Volunteer Mentor (King’s Lynn)

Futures enables young people with additional support needs to realise their full potential through volunteer placements. Mentors support them to achieve their goals & play a role in their community.

Vocal – Support Volunteer (Kings Lynn)

Enable young people and adults with learning disabilities to volunteer within their own community, which helps increase their confidence and social and employability skills.

Full-Time Volunteering: Owen’s Story

'Having the opportunity to form such close bonds with the people who support you with a disability on a day-to-day basis sets volunteering apart from other forms of care'

Vocal: William’s Story

"From volunteering I have been able to accept myself and build my self esteem and confidence and feel like I have a meaning and a reason to get out of bed."

Futures: Tina’s Story

"I have been really excited to see him getting more confident and outgoing over the weeks while he has been volunteering."

Futures: Richard’s Story

"Volunteering gives me a sense of pride and makes me feel I am doing something worthwhile – I would definitely recommend it to others."
futures young disabled people additional support needs volunteering

Futures: Chris’s Story

"His confidence and abilities grew more with each visit and he showed a keen interest in learning new things. He soon started to use his own initiative, and towards the end of his placement he really seemed to enjoy himself."
#givingtuesday

Volunteering Matters mobilises people power on #GivingTuesday

In 2015, #GivingTuesday broke the world record for the highest amount of money donated online in a 24 hour period. We think this is brilliant – but #GivingTuesday shouldn’t just be about giving money so we are asking our supporters to donate the gift of time by volunteering in their communities.
Spirit of 2012 logo #GetOutGetActive

#GetOutGetActive Launch of £4.5 million grant

Spirit of 2012 today announced a UK wide consortium for its latest campaign #GetOutGetActive which focuses on increasing participation in fun and inclusive physical activity.

Continued austerity a threat to communities

Worries of continued austerity, calling for the next government to acknowledge the value of the volunteering sector given its critical role in helping to promote and sustain the well-being of individuals and communities.

Overcoming the barriers to volunteering

Chief Executive, Oonagh Aitken talks about barriers to volunteering and reaffirms our commitment to ensuring that everyone has the chance to transform their lives and the lives of others through the power of volunteering.
volunteer recruitment active volunteering hackney

Top Tips for Recruiting Volunteers

We share our top tips for volunteer recruitment in a new area, testing our traditional methods of recruitment and testing new routes through our work with partnership programme, Get Out Get Active.

10 years of full-time volunteering with Mencap

Our full-time volunteers have been supporting people living with a learning disability in Stratford-upon-Avon for 10 years. Our Regional Volunteer Manager Jenny Szewiel spoke to Heart of England Mencap Manager John Morton to find out more…

What did we learn from our volunteers this summer?

This summer, we asked our volunteers, why they volunteer, what they think about the training and support we offer, and what benefits they have gained from the experience. Here, Oonagh discusses the results.

Harnessing social action to support older people

The Nuffield Trust recently published a key report, entitled ‘Harnessing social action to support older people’, to present the findings of their evaluation of seven social action projects funded by the Reducing Winter Pressures Fund.