We’ll hope you’ll find the answers to any questions you may have about your volunteering with Revitalise here, if not please call us on 0303 303 0145 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm) and we’ll be happy to help.

 

General Questions

Revitalise actively welcomes people from all backgrounds and countries; we have volunteers from all over the world, travelling from countries like Spain, Germany and even as far afield as Ghana and Korea! Students, graduates, retired people, teenagers, people in employment and not in employment all come to Revitalise to help our guests have a great holiday. There is no upper age limit.

No previous experience is necessary. Once your application is approved, we will give you an induction, training and ongoing support to carry out your role whether you volunteer at a centre, office or shop.

I am under 18 – is this ok?

Many young people aged 16 and 17 volunteer with us, but spaces are limited so please contact us for advice before booking.

What about group and team volunteering?

There is always a great atmosphere when we have groups from schools, colleges and work places spending time volunteering in one of our centres.

Volunteering is a great way to give something back to the community and build confidence, skills and team spirit. Disabled and non-disabled people work together in a truly socially inclusive way, enhancing their appreciation of the value of diversity and the impact of disability on day-to-day life.

Our weekly programmes demand a high degree of commitment and energy and presents volunteers with an interesting variety of challenges.

I hear that there are corporate volunteering opportunities available?

We have a fantastic corporate volunteering programme, offering tangible benefits for you and your organisation. As an alternative to residential volunteering we encourage companies to take part in team projects lasting for one or two days.

If you are interested in this programme then take a look at our Corporate Volunteering and Team Building page for more information

There are lots of reasons why people volunteer. Here is what our volunteers have told us:
To enhance their CV and job prospects
For Duke of Edinburgh
To gain life skills and experience
To do something totally different and challenging
It was part of a course
Because it has been recommended as being a great experience

You support people with disabilities by enabling them to take a much-needed break
You also help carers, many of whom provide round the clock care, to have a break
You enable our guests to experience independence, opportunity and choice
You give your time to help others
You make a difference
You have fun!

Revitalise offers you the opportunity to:
Make a valuable contribution to the lives of others (the feeling is like no other)
Gain a certificate of achievement (you may be able to get formal accreditation too)
Fulfil your coursework; we provide assessments for students and references on request
Boost your career prospects; many of our staff members started out as volunteers just like you!
Make new friends and have fun!

We welcome volunteers to our centres all year round, but we especially need volunteers in Spring and Autumn.

The majority of the weeks that we offer are themed. We have weeks such as Murder Mystery and Country & Western, for example, so there is a lot of choice for you. If you are someone who likes being out and about, shopping, skating or perhaps you like a bit of fancy dress, there will be a Theme Week to suit you. Visit our breaks page to find out more about our Theme Weeks.

We welcome everyone. If you have a disability or additional needs that you think may affect your volunteering then please contact us and we will be glad to advise you.

Centre questions

Residential volunteers at a Revitalise centre usually help for a week or two at a time. The weeks run from Saturday to Saturday.

Revitalise also has opportunities for long term volunteers. Places are limited and some restrictions may apply, but we welcome enquiries from people looking for six month placements or longer – ideal for UK students looking for a cheap GAP year experience! Some European and non-EEA places may be available. Please contact volunteer@revitalise.org.uk for further details.

To help on a daily basis in your local Revitalise Centre, please call the centre direct. You can find their details in the Our Centres or Contact Us sections.

All you need to do is complete our online booking form and provide references. For those of you living in the UK, Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) checks will be done. If you live outside of the UK, within the EEA, then we will require an official, original ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ from the national Police agency of your home country, giving details of any previous criminal convictions, including those considered spent. This must be translated into English.

We are unable to accept direct bookings from people outside the EEA, but don’t let that stop you; please give us a call or email us and we will put you in contact with the agencies that we work with. We have arrangements with a small number of partner agencies and can only accept applications made through these agencies.

See the Register to Volunteer page for full details on booking a place and complete our online booking form.

Our guests are deemed to be vulnerable adults and at Revitalise, whilst we provide a fun holiday, we also are registered to provide care and nursing, which requires us to carry out such checks as it is our duty to protect our staff, guests and volunteers. Volunteers working in our centres need to undergo background checks including Enhanced Disclosures (Police record check). For more information on what this involves read the DBS information.

Click here to find out how to complete your DBS form

Nothing! As a residential volunteer, all your food and accommodation is provided, along with full public and employer’s liability insurance. Of course, if you wish, you can raise funds by sponsorship and donations to help cover these costs. This can make a big difference in keeping our costs down. You can donate on our JustGiving page

We help with travel costs within mainland Britain. We can help with anything up to £50 per placement – so don’t forget to keep your receipts!

Accommodation at the centres is certainly not the Ritz, but we can promise that you will have a comfortable stay. Your accommodation is most likely to be shared bunk rooms with between two and four volunteers sharing. Unfortunately there are very limited single rooms available, but if you feel strongly that you need a single room then let us know at the time of registering and we will do our best to accommodate you, but please be mindful that we can’t guarantee it. To be honest, it’s not nearly as fun being on your own anyway! There are ample showers and other facilities (including internet access).

Bed linen, washing facilities and showers are provided but please bring your own towels.

Along with our guests (people with disabilities and carers) there will be loads of other volunteers too, some short term, some long term, so you won’t be on your own.

No. Most of our first-time volunteers have no experience either and in fact after their volunteer placement many of them tell us how nervous they were when they started. They were worried that they would not know what to do and that it might have affected someone’s holiday. What we say to you is that if you do feel like that, don’t worry; that feeling is perfectly normal and although sometimes it will be hard work, it will not feel like work – trust us. You will be given training and support to carry out your role and there are always plenty of staff around if you need help or advice.

Residential volunteering is great fun but do be prepared for hard work and pretty long hours. Working routines are based on our guests needs and can vary from week to week. Youth weeks can be more demanding than other weeks for instance, but equally more fun.
– Short-term residential volunteers (between one and two weeks) can expect to be on duty for around 13 hours a day (Yes, 13 whole hours!).
– Longer-term volunteers (after an initial two week orientation period) will have two days off each week and accumulate 10 days annual leave every 6 months.

We work hard to provide a holiday environment that is very different to traditional respite breaks. You will play a vital role in this, by supporting our guests and ensuring that they have a great holiday. As a residential volunteer there will be plenty of socialising too, as you will be providing companionship and practical help on excursions and activities. We hope the more relaxing social activities are enjoyable for our volunteers as well as our guests, but there’s still no getting away from the long hours!

You will help to provide some basic personal care and assistance to our guests on an individual basis, but you will not be expected to help with intimate personal care unless you have previous experience and training in this area and are happy to do so.

Please rest assured you won’t be asked to undertake any task you feel uncomfortable with.

 

Revitalise offers three training levels:

Level 1
Level 1 volunteers are mostly asked to socialise with guests, help at mealtimes, help on organised excursions, assist with activities and entertainment within the centres and support other volunteers as part of the team.

Level 2
Level 2 volunteers are trained in personal care; they don’t replace staff members but can assist more independent guests with showering etc, leaving the staff members to focus on the guests that require that little bit more help.

Level 3
Level 3 volunteers are trained in personal care to the same level as our Revitalise Health Care Assistants and you even receive the same staff induction. You will be able to provide care unsupervised (once trained of course) and even be skilled enough to hoist guests.

We currently have three centres in the UK: Netley Waterside House in Southampton, Sandpipers in Southport and Jubilee Lodge in Chigwell, Essex. Visit the Our Centres section to get a flavour of our centres – each one is different – and the different facilities available. You will also be able to see where they are.

Volunteer again! We are always grateful for all the hard work our volunteers put in and the extra spark they add to our guests’ holiday.

Spread the word about Revitalise. Encourage other potential volunteers and guests to give us a try or simply promote us on social media (we are always grateful for the occasional tweet or ‘like’ on facebook!). Or why not consider becoming a Revitalise Volunteer Ambassador, helping answer volunteer queries? These are always best coming from the people who have volunteered themselves.

Donate – your time, energy or money. This could just be a simple donation, or you might want to organise a fundraising event, run a marathon, even skydive for us? Or you could help with projects such as refurbishing the centres, painting or gardening etc. We will be very grateful whatever you choose to do.

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Volunteer FAQs

If you haven’t already found out all you need to know about volunteering with us, these FAQs may help you get the answers you need.

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