Volunteer With Us
Volunteer with us and make a real difference in the BS15 community! We have a range of volunteering opportunities from shopping for vulnerable residents to getting involved in local community projects.
If you'd like to volunteer to take calls, or run errands for residents needing help, register following the instructions below.
How It Works
When our amazing call handlers receive a call requesting help, they enter the details into our volunteer system. A notification with basic details of the job is sent out through an app to all of our fantastic volunteers. The job is assigned to the volunteer who accepts the job first.
How to Register as a Volunteer
- Go to www.getlocal.org.uk/, select Log In from the menu, and when asked for the account code use BS15help.
- When you are on the correct screen, you will see a green button that says 'Place Order'. Ignore this button, but on that screen there is an option in the menu to Sign Up.
- Please provide your email address, home address and phone number.
- Select the volunteering option, and choose the job types you are able to help with.
- Once you have signed up, you will receive an email within 24 hours. This will contain details of how to download the app and how to manage requests. You will not receive any requests until you have set up the app.
When you're registered, you can pick up any jobs that suit you. Upon registration, you are asked to select the type of jobs/errands you are happy to do so you will only receive relevant notifications.
TAKING CALLS REQUESTING HELP
If you'd like to take calls on our freephone hotline from those in the community requesting help, register as above and select the option 'Call Handling'. Call handlers will need a computer and phone (mobile or landline). You are able to choose the time-slots that you are free to help (minimum 1-hour shift), and calls are automatically diverted to your phone during those hours. We understand that everyone's situation is constantly changing and are very grateful even if you can only help out for a short time. Everyone is welcome - we have call handlers of all ages, from 18-85!
OTHER VOLUNTEERING OPPORTUNITIES
Southern Brooks are helping to co-ordinate volunteers. If you agree to us sharing your information upon registration, they will email you when there are new community volunteering opportunities. These could be through organisations such as Age UK, Milestones, Foodbanks and community groups.
Ignite-Life UK are also looking for volunteers with experience in children and family support services. Please visit their website for more information: CLICK HERE
Bank or PayPal transfers are the preferred payment method. If the individual does not have online banking, ask if they have a family member who can help.
Call the individual when you have paid for the goods to advise them of the total cost so they can transfer the money to you before you deliver. Do not to offer any credit. If anyone is struggling financially, we can arrange food parcels.
Give the receipt to the individual alongside the shopping.
If the individual has no access to online banking or PayPal but has cash, ask them to put the money in an envelope on the doorstep when you arrive. When you get home, dispose of the envelope and wash the money.
Waitrose has started a pay over the phone service. After you have completed the shop, Waitrose will call the customer to arrange the payment over the phone.
Card Payment Over the Phone (Only to be used as a last resort)
If the above options are not available, as a last resort, we do have the facility to take card payments over the phone.
To arrange a payment to be taken over the phone:
- Call the hotline on 01454 300186 and ask one of the call handlers to request an admin to contact you regarding an over-the-phone card payment.
- The admin will arrange for the charity to contact the individual to take payment.
- Take a picture of the receipt and send the image, along with your bank details, in a private message to Vicky Robinson.
- Vicky will transfer the money into your bank account. Please allow 3-5 days to receive payment.
Some people are using volunteer e-cards which are available in some supermarkets. If you are required to use a volunteer e-card, the call handler will provide instructions when passing the details of the errand to you.
When you deliver to an individual, please:
- Put goods, alongside the receipt, on the doorstep, ring the bell and step back 2 metres.
- Wait to check that the individual answers.
- Check they are OK and ask if there is anything else the individual needs (direct them to the hotline if you can’t help).
There is some valuable free training available about how to start up meaningful conversations to check up on others’ health and wellbeing. If you are interested, please follow this link: https://www.e-lfh.org.uk/programmes/making-every-contact-count/.
If you are worried an individual about for any reason, please call the hotline on 01454 300186 and explain the situation. The call handler will contact one of our Safeguarding Officers who will decide the best way to move forward and get the help required.
- Maintain social distancing guidelines at all times.
- Wash your hands for 20 seconds as regularly as you can.
- Use hand sanitiser when you are out and about.
- If you wear gloves, remove / change them immediately after shopping.
- Avoid touching your face until you have washed your hands.
- Wash any cash you are given when you get home.
- Show proof of identity (Driving licence etc.) upon request.
- Provide a valid receipt when delivering shopping.
- Leave shopping on the doorstep, do not enter the house unless in exceptional circumstanced.
- Be polite and friendly at all times.
- Report any concerns to the hotline.
Can I give my phone number to those I have supported so they can contact me directly in future?
Absolutely! A regular person to contact can build trust and reassure those that are isolated. Hopefully, some friendships will also develop! However, don’t feel that you have to do this – it is entirely up to you.
Can I buy alcohol and cigarettes for individuals?
Yes, just check their ID when you deliver.
What do I do if I am concerned about the wellbeing of someone?
Call the helpline on 01454 300186. The call handler will take the details and contact one of our Safeguarding Officers who will decide on the best way to move forward.
Please do not try to deal with any issues yourself unless you have significant safeguarding training and experience. If you do deal with any problems while you are volunteering, call the hotline to advise of the situation.
You can signpost them to our Professional Support Services page on this website: Professional Support Services.
Someone would like to donate money to the Foodbank. How can they do this?
They can donate online by following the current donation link here, or they can give you cash if they have no online facilities. If they provide you with cash, please donate this money through the links below. Please write out a receipt, sign the receipt, ask the resident to sign, and keep a copy.