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 0163 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm) and we’ll be happy to help.

 

Volunteering at our centres

Everyone above the age of 16 is welcome! Revitalise actively welcomes people from all ages, backgrounds and countries; we have volunteers from Europe and even as far afield as South 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.

We have no upper age limit and no previous experience is necessary for any of our roles and you will receive a thorough induction and training on your arrival at our centres. The only things we ask for are for our volunteers to be friendly, so they can provide a warm and memorable holiday for our guests and to have a competent level of English to be able to provide support to our guests and follow safety procedures.

Please note that to receive training in aspects of health care volunteers must be 18 years or older.

Overseas volunteers must also be 18 years or older. Exceptions can be made if volunteers are coming as part of a school/college group from within the EEA- please see ‘group bookings’ for more information.

Volunteers outside the EEA will need to arrange their placement through one of our agencies. Please see ‘I am not from the UK section’ for more information.

Our centres are open for volunteering opportunities all year apart from the first week in January. We fill our spaces quickly during summer and school/college holidays so please do book your space in plenty of time to avoid disappointment. We are quieter in spring and autumn so if you are able to help then instead, that would be great!

The majority of the weeks that we offer are themed so as well as when you are free, this could help you decide which week is best for you! There is plenty of choice; We have Murder Mystery and Country & Western weeks, for example, so 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. Click here to find out more about our themed weeks.

Most of our volunteers are residential. Residential placements run from Saturday to Saturday and we have opportunities for volunteers to stay from 1 week to a year and any length of time in between. Please note that we can’t guarantee availability on your chosen date so if we are full, we will be in touch to find an alternative date that works for you.

Places are limited and some restrictions may apply for longer term placements but please do fill in our booking form and we will be able to advise you of the options.

European and non-EEA places are also available. Please see ‘I am not from the UK’ section for more information.

If residential volunteering isn’t suitable for you, we also have opportunities to support on an occasional/daily basis for those local to our centres. Please see our section titled ‘are there only residential opportunities at the centres?’

We have designated volunteer blocks at our centres for you to stay in. Most rooms have bunk beds and accommodate 2-4 people per room. There are shared bathroom facilities and we ensure you share rooms with the same gender.

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!

Bed linen, is provided but please bring your own towels. There is also internet access at the centre.

The majority of our volunteers are residential but we have plenty of opportunities for local volunteers to support whenever they can. With so much going on in the centres we know we will be able to find a role that suits you and at a time that works for you. You could spend time in the centre with guests, accompany them on excursions or enjoy the evening entertainment with them. Or you could host a coffee morning, support in the gardens, shops or use your current skill-set to lead an activity in centre. Anytime you can give is greatly appreciated!

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.

Yes you can! If you feel more comfortable coming along with a friend or a group of friends then just make sure you book in advance so there is enough space for you all. There is so much to do and so many new people to meet though that if you do come alone, you will soon make friends with fellow volunteers, staff and guests alike!

Please do remember that if you are booking to complete your DofE residential then a requirement is that you should not know anyone during your placement. You should contact your Group Leader for advice if required. Please see our ‘Duke of Edinburgh Participants’ section for more information.

Yes! If you’d like to see what the centres are like and meet some of the team before deciding to volunteer or before you begin, that’s no problem. Please do ring the centres and let them know you’d like to pop in and we can ensure we are free to show you around.

Nothing! Volunteering with us is free. For our residential roles our volunteers live at one of our centres for the duration of their placement. Accommodation and all meals are provided and the costs for excursions are also on us. We also reimburse travel expenses up to £50 for travel within mainland Britain.

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 or get in touch with us for your own Fundraising Pack.

As far as possible, volunteers should arrive at the times given as this ensures the training and inductions can be carried out in one group on the Saturday afternoon. Please arrive anytime between 12-2pm on the Saturday (1st day) of your volunteering placement. If you are around at 1pm you will be invited to join us for lunch.

You are welcome to leave anytime on the last day of your placement, but if you could stay in the morning to support, that would be a great help as Saturday is our busiest day.

We understand that it might not be possible for all our volunteers to arrive/depart at these set times, especially those travelling from further afield. If you will be arriving outside the arrival slot then please just let us know so the centre knows when to expect you. Equally if you need to leave earlier than indicated, just let the centre staff know.

Suitable and comfortable clothes-you will be accompanying guests on excursions so please be prepared for all weathers.
Comfortable and covered shoes- so you will be protected while supporting guests with wheelchairs.
Toiletries, including a towel.
Photographic ID
Spending money as you wish

You need to complete our online booking form as the first step.

As part of this process you will need to let us know your availability, preferred location and provide 2 references.

For those 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.

Once you have completed our booking form, we will send you more details about how to complete these checks. Please allow 3-5 working days for us to get back to you.

Please note; we are unable to accept direct bookings from volunteers outside the EEA. We have arrangements with a small number of partner agencies and can only accept applications made through these agencies. See volunteering for non-UK residents for further information.

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.

We are unable to accept volunteers who haven’t completed and received clearance through the required checks.

If you are seeing the ‘contact a verifier’ page on the application this means you have successfully completed the online part of your application. We unfortunately can’t change the information on the screen you can see as the application is through another provider. You need to ignore the numbers here and you just need to pick which option you want to go with for verification of your chosen documents. See ‘Step 5’ on our instructions which were sent to you when you first made your booking.

Once you have completed Step 5, your application will continue to be processed so that’s all you need to do and we will let you know if there are any problems.

We unfortunately cannot accept any volunteers who have not completed the necessary background checks. To avoid disappointment, we recommend booking your place 6-8 weeks in advance to allow enough time to complete the checks. Mistakes/errors in DBS applications and not providing the correct documentation for this check or the Certificate of Good Conduct as required can lead to delays so please do follow the instructions we send carefully.

Please do keep this in mind when booking your travel to our centre as it will be at your own risk if you wish to book this before your checks are complete.

Please allow 3-5 working days for us to get back to you following your booking. You will receive a confirmation email with the dates and location of your volunteering or an email with alternative dates if we don’t have availability.

UK volunteers will be sent instructions on how to complete their DBS check. Overseas volunteers will be sent instructions about acquiring and sending Certificates of Good Conduct and translations.

All volunteers will receive our volunteering guide, travel expenses claim form, and directions on how to get to the centres.

4 weeks before your placement you will receive a reminder with the volunteer guide, expense form and travel instructions again.
1 week before you will receive a reminder to bring your photographic ID with you to the centre.

Please check your Spam/Junk folder for these just in case and if you still haven’t got them, let us know and we can send this information to you.

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.

We currently have three centres in the UK: Netley Waterside House in Southampton, Sandpipers in Southport and Jubilee Lodge in Chigwell, Essex. Click here 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.

We are an Approved Activity Provider for the Duke of Edinburgh Award, which means you are able to complete your residential with us for your Gold Award. Please be aware that although the residential component requires a 5 night stay, our volunteering residential opportunities require a 7 night minimum stay.

It is your responsibility to make sure you meet the requirements of the residential element, for example not completing this component alongside your friends, so please do check with your group leader before booking. Let our centre staff know on your arrival that you are completing your Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award and we will be able to complete your necessary records for this.

We welcome group placements from schools and colleges in the UK and abroad. If you would like to arrange for your students to volunteer with us, please contact our Volunteer Team on volunteer@revitalise.org.uk for more information about how to proceed.

Please note that group bookings for volunteers from outside the EEA will need to be organised through one of our agencies. Please see ‘I am not from the UK’ section.

See our Corporate section for team bookings information.

Yes you can-many of our volunteers come from abroad. Spaces are limited and some restrictions may apply though for overseas volunteers but don’t let that stop you! Please fill in our booking form or get in touch to find out more.

Please note that volunteers from outside the EEA will need to organise their placement through one of our agencies. Please get in touch with us for more information and we can put you in touch with the agencies that we work with.

By volunteering with us you can have fun, make friends and boost your confidence. It is also a great way to gain relevant and transferrable skills to help your studies or future career prospects. You will also be making a difference by helping our guests have a truly revitalising break! All volunteers receive certificates on their departure and we can provide references on request and accreditation if required by your course.

All our volunteers receive a thorough induction and training on their first day at our centres. This covers a tour of the building, health and safety procedures, information about Revitalise and how the centre runs and your volunteering role. All volunteers are trained in moving and handling of wheelchairs and have an induction with one of our centre managers, nurses and drivers.

Social Volunteer
All our volunteers start as social volunteers. In this role you will be providing companionship and conversation to our guests. You would also help at mealtimes, on organised excursions, assist with activities and entertainment within the centres and support other volunteers as part of the team. You will learn all you need to know about this role on your arrival.

Care Support Volunteers
As well as the social elements of the role as above, longer term volunteers can choose to receive training in elements of health care. Volunteers can progress to a level that suits them and there is no time limit to complete any elements. Volunteers will not be taking on the role of staff members or be helping with intimate care.

This training takes place on a 1:1 basis with our staff and volunteers will always be supervised.

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

Residential volunteering is great fun! 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.

Volunteering routines are based on our guests needs and can vary from week to week but as a residential volunteer there will be plenty of socialising, as you will be providing companionship and practical help on excursions and activities within the centre.

Although volunteers support for approximately 13 hours a day, it won’t feel like hard work as volunteers will be able to enjoy the activities alongside our guests. Volunteers can of course ask for and take breaks whenever they are needed.

– Short term volunteers support during each day of their stay while longer-term volunteers (after an initial two week orientation period) will have two days off each week.

We love welcoming back our volunteers. To make it easy for you to book your place we have a separate, short online form for returning volunteers to complete. We will be in touch if any of your references or DBS have expired but there is no need to complete the original form every time you want to volunteer.

We are able to reimburse travel expenses up to a maximum of £50 for travel within mainland Britain. The expenses claim form will be in the email sent to you to confirm your volunteering placement or you can ask your centre for a copy. Please make sure you have your receipts and tickets from your travel and attach these to your claim form. Expenses forms must be posted to the centre at which you volunteered to be signed by staff there and not sent directly to our Head Office. If we receive forms without the centre signatures, there will be a delay in your payment. Please allow up to 2 weeks for us to process your payments.

Please note; volunteers from abroad must claim their travel expenses before they leave the centre as we are unable to reimburse them after you have left.

Other Opportunities

Once you have volunteered, there are still plenty of ways you can help (and ways to get involved even if you haven’t been able to volunteer yet.)

If you can- 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!)

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.

Our Revitalise shops are in the South of England. Please click here for more information and the location of our shops. Once you’ve found the shop nearest to you please contact them directly using the details provided.

Our offices are open from 9.00am – 5.00pm. We offer flexible and part-time hours to suit your schedule. We will reimburse your travel expenses and if you work a full day then lunch is on us too!

So whether you have a week to spare in the holidays or can spare a few hours a week on a long term basis then why not get in touch? Please complete our booking form and select to volunteer at our Head Office.

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 Challenges page for more information.

General

Yes, you can volunteer and still receive your benefits. Read the DWP guide to volunteering on benefits.

We welcome everyone to volunteer at Revitalise. 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.

We would love to stay in touch with you so please do sign up to our Volunteers E-News by scrolling to the bottom of our homepage. By doing so you can keep up to date with Revitalise and volunteering news, upcoming opportunities and share your volunteering stories. You can opt out of these communications anytime.

You can also follow us on social media, by finding us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Feel free to share your pics and videos with us and don’t forget to tag us!

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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.

Find out more