Our courses start in January, April and September. To register your interest for the next volunteer course at Home-Start Richmond, or to find out more, please contact us.
Still not sure if voluntary work is right for you? Read on for more information about volunteering with Home-Start.
“I’m a Mum with two children; one of them has various problems so I understand the pressures of family life. I’ve been lucky as help has always been there. Now it’s my turn to help – because I can. Being a volunteer is something I am proud of.” Home-Start Richmond volunteer
Who would I help?
Volunteers support local families in the boroughs of Richmond, Kingston and Hounslow facing a variety of difficulties, including loneliness and isolation; ill health; post-natal depression; disabilities; bereavement; relationship difficulties; lone-parenting and coping with several pre-school children.
If you have children and a few hours to spare each week, your experience could make a difference to a family who has at least one child under five years old. By volunteering with a family in their own home and offering friendship, Home-Start volunteers represent a lifeline for many families who are finding it hard to cope.
Would I be the right sort of person to support a family?
Home-Start volunteers are all ages and from all walks of life. All that we ask of you is that you have experience of bringing up children, that you attend our Preparation Course and can spare between two and three hours a week to visit someone.
What would visiting a family involve?
After training, we ask that you commit to spending 2-3 hours with your Home-Start family each week. You might be with a new parent, helping to build their confidence as they adapt to life with a small baby, or sharing an outing with a family who finds getting out of the house difficult. The visits might involve offering an extra pair of hands to a family with several children or providing a listening ear to a mother who is suffering from postnatal depression.
By undertaking voluntary service with Home-Start you will be offering friendship to parents and spending time with a family in a way that meets their needs (reasonable out of pocket expenses are paid).
What will I gain from being a Home-Start volunteer?
- You will be helping a family to cope with the pressures they are facing and make a real difference to the lives of parents and their children
- You will receive on-going support and training to prepare you for all aspects of your role as a volunteer, from our dedicated Co-ordinators
- You will gain skills and knowledge from our Volunteer Preparation Course which usually runs over 10 weeks, one day per week, 09:45 – 14:30 (excluding half-term)
- You can have your coursework accredited to NVQ level 1 or 2 (optional)
- You will gain valuable experience, which could be beneficial for your work or personal development
I’m not a parent; can I still get involved?
Yes, you can. We always need volunteers, parents or non-parents, who could support our charity by helping with fundraising activities or by joining our Board of Trustees and getting involved in the running of the scheme.
This sounds interesting. What is the next step?
Please contact us to find out when our next Preparation Course for volunteers will be. We usually run three per year, starting in January, April and September. You can choose to work towards Accreditation (NVQ levels 1 or 2) as the course is accredited by the Open College Network. After you’ve completed the course, one of our Co-ordinators will arrange to meet you to discuss further details and match you with a family. We ask prospective volunteers for two personal references and permission to undertake an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check.
We would love to hear from you. Please contact us for more details.
Where will I volunteer?
We need people prepared to undertake local voluntary work in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, the Royal Borough of Kingston and the London Borough of Hounslow. Our service covers the whole of the boroughs and as far as possible you will be paired with a family who are easy for you to get to.
In the borough of Richmond, we cover Barnes, Mortlake, Kew, East Sheen, Richmond, Richmond Hill, St Margaret’s, East Twickenham, Twickenham, Strawberry Hill, Whitton, Heathfield, Hampton Hill, Hampton, Hampton Wick and Teddington.
In the borough of Kingston, we are currently building up our service and aim to cover Kingston, Surbiton, Berrylands, Tudor, Canbury, Coombe Hill, Coombe Vale, Norbiton, Grove, Beverley, St James, St Marks, Old Malden, Alexandra, Tolworth, Hook and Chessington.
Our service in Hounslow covers the whole of the borough.
Home-Start Richmond is an Equal Opportunities organisation and is positively committed to oppose all direct and indirect discrimination in the organisation against people on the grounds of ethnic origin, religion, culture, disability, gender, sexual orientation, age and family status.