The UK is steeped in history and dotted with ancient buildings, castles and cathedrals. Volunteers in the UK work in schools, camps and community centres. While qualified staff are always present, fresh, energetic young volunteers are crucial in providing students, camp-goers, programme participants and residents with a much-needed friend and role model.
Placements are located throughout the British Isles
Is it for me?
An ever-popular destination, undertaking a placement in the UK will allow you to bypass the predictable tourist trail and experience either country like a local. While placements differ greatly, the need for volunteers with a hard-working, fun-loving nature is a constant. You’ll be surprised how the bonds you form with the people under your care will enrich both your life and theirs.
Schools Assistant placements are at preparatory schools for seven to 13 year olds (some have pre-prep departments for children from three years old), senior schools for 13 to 18 year olds, or schools which combine some or all of these. Many are single-sex schools. Volunteers are usually based in the boarding houses or PE/sports departments, but most schools try to give the volunteer a varied timetable.
Outdoor Activity placements vary from big organisations with a large number of seasonal young staff, to small family-run operations. Volunteer tasks include leading group activities such as archery, ropes, abseiling, orienteering, assault courses, canoeing, overseeing team building games and undertaking some general cooking, gardening and cleaning duties.
Caring placements are in residential homes and generally involve working with adults or children with a variety of disabilities. Volunteer duties may involve assisting with the day-to-day care of residents, leading activities such as art, sport, and music, or taking outings to places of interest such as the theatre, seaside or local pub! These placements provide the opportunity to support, entertain and befriend residents and enable volunteers to make a significant difference to people’s lives.
Volunteers may receive a small monetary payment each week as a contribution towards expenses incurred during their placement in the UK.
Accommodation and Food
With Schools Assistant placements, hosts provide volunteers with their own room in the boarding house and food is supplied by the school canteen.
With Outdoor Activity and Caring placements, accommodation varies but usually comprises of a shared house or flat. Some placements provide food, while others set up a system of self-catering for volunteers.
Accommodation & food
Need to know
Pre departure briefing – all volunteers are invited to a group briefing prior to departure
On arrival – the majority of volunteers attend a two-day orientation course at Reading University, while others receive an orientation upon arrival at their placement
You will also need to budget for:
There are plenty of opportunities to travel. If placed within a school, volunteers will be able to travel during the school holidays and at the end of their placement. With all other placements the opportunity to travel will be at the end of the placement. The British Isles are a gateway to Europe, with excellent transport links to the continent and to Ireland. There are rugged mountains in Wales and Scotland, pristine lakes in the Lake District, beautiful, historic towns and picture postcard perfect rolling hills dotted with livestock. London is a magnet, a real cultural and cosmopolitan centre that is not to be missed.