Our volunteers support vulnerable children and families through some of the most challenging stages of their lives. We recruit, train and support volunteers to mentor young people leaving care, befriend children with challenging behaviour and support the families of children with life-limiting illnesses. Our volunteers also support parents with children at risk of neglect and on a ‘child in need’ plan.
With the support of our volunteers, vulnerable children and families are given the opportunity to overcome serious life challenges, rebuild their lives and play a meaningful and productive role in society.
The Keep in Touch project aims to support families who worry about being able to pay fuel bills, are not warm enough in their house, and are affected by the cold in terms of their health.
The Knowledge Equals Opportunities (KEO) project supports new migrant families in the area with primary school aged children and aims to enable parents support their children with their education.
Volunteer Centre Newcastle acts as a connector between people and communities with a database of opportunities across the city.
Volunteers Supporting Families projects recruit, train and match volunteers to mentor and support families with complex needs, where children are at risk of harm or neglect.
The KEO programme is aimed at migrant parents with primary school aged children and supports them in understanding how to create the right conditions for learning.
Supported by the Southend Borough Council, the project recruits, trains and matches volunteers to mentor and support families with children at risk of neglect or harm
Supported by The Royal Borough of Greenwich's Third Sector Commissioning Framework, the project recruits, trains and matches volunteers to mentor and support families with children at risk of neglect or harm.
Lewisham project, Volunteers Supporting Families has been commissioned since 2012 by the local authority. The project recruits, trains and matches volunteers to mentor and support families with children at risk of neglect or harm.
"It is lovely that Mum now sees a brighter future for herself and her child. She understands everyone isn’t against her now that she’s had me supporting and empowering her."
"It can sometimes feel like little has changed but, standing back, I can recognise that all the small steps they make are taking them in a better and more positive direction."
"The experience has been invaluable; I am always touched whenever the family thank me for my support because I know it is coming from the heart."
"I’d certainly recommend that busy social workers consider make use of the programme: committed & compassionate volunteers can make the world of difference to vulnerable families."
"I cannot speak more highly of Volunteering Matters to anyone interested in volunteering"
"Volunteering is a great opportunity to support vulnerable families while social services and mental health services are struggling with very limited resources."
This research summary presents findings from a rapid literature review by Leeds Beckett University on volunteering, inequalities & public health.
Executive Summary on the Evaluation of Volunteers Supporting Families project; an additional resource for social care teams.
This paper sets out Volunteering Matters’ thinking about how we might empower volunteers in ways that can help them to improve the quality of outcomes for people who use care and support services.
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.
Our Women Against Sexual violence and exploitation Speak UP (WASSUP) project, based in Ipswich, has won the Anne Dunford OBE Award for youth participation.
Full-Time Volunteering, Sex Matters Too and Volunteers Supporting Families have all been shortlisted for Children and Young People Now awards.
We are delighted to be a finalist for the Families Included prize, presented by Essex County Council and the innovation charity Nesta.
The Mayor of Greenwich, Councillor Norman Adams, joined our Volunteers Supporting Families (VSF) volunteers at an event to recognise and celebrate the impact of their work with vulnerable families.
Volunteers from Croydon were celebrated by the Mayor last night for their work supporting families across the borough, at an event held at Bernard Weatherill House
Our families project supporting vulnerable families had cause to celebrate last week, winning the ‘Supporting Young People, Children & Families' award at South Tyneside Volunteer Awards 2015.
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.
"Today, on International Volunteers Day, it’s time for us to talk about what is right with our society."
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.
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.
At Volunteering Matters, we are delighted that youth volunteering and social action are rising up the political agenda, following the NCS bill progressing through Parliament.
Whether you are young or old, we hope that learning more about our volunteer opportunities has inspired you to get involved and make a difference in your community.
Laura Caveney with a guide for the reluctant volunteer this Volunteers' Week
Read our CEO Oonagh's take on Mental Health Awareness Week and the power of relationships on mental health.