We would not be able to provide the services we offer without volunteers. We welcome volunteers from all walks of life.
There are various ways in which you can help as a volunteer, regardless of your skills and experience. All we ask is that you are enthusiastic, and willing to learn and work as part of a team. For Christmas Volunteers, we ask that you commit to working at least one 4-hour shift over the Christmas period.
Please note that all volunteers must attend training and provide written references as these are essential to carrying out voluntary work with us.
We need 500+ volunteers during Christmas week. Some of the many volunteer roles are listed below:
We always welcome volunteers with professional and specialist skills, including:
Our guests always appreciate volunteers who are able to provide entertainment and host skills workshops, including:
- Art and writing
Some examples of guests' talents can be viewed here
What should volunteers expect?
All new volunteers are expected to attend an induction training course. This provides an awareness of what to expect when dealing with the charity's guests and fellow volunteers. All shifts are under the control of trained supervisors.
The Caring at Christmas charity has a zero-tolerance policy towards inappropriate behaviour. Guests are made aware that any form of fracas or harassment is unacceptable and is likely to result in ejection from the C@C premises.
We work hard to create and maintain a safe and friendly environment for both guests and volunteers. Incidents of poor behaviour are unusual, but do occur occasionally. Supervisors are trained to deal with such behaviour as quickly and effectively as possible.
Working with homeless people is very rewarding, but can be demanding. But don't worry(!), we can provide training to supplement your existing skills and experience. Training and coaching available includes:
Most training courses last between 2 and 4 hours
What's in it for you?
There are a number of ways in which you can benefit personally from working with the Caring at Christmas charity. These include:
- Working with homeless people can be very rewarding and brings a sense of fulfillment from helping those less privileged
- Development of personal skills, e.g. working together, leading a team, communicating
and influencing, etc
Once you have gained experience of working with the charity over the Christmas period and have developed an understanding of our expectations and how things work, we would encourage you to consider becoming a supervisor. Supervisors play a vital role in ensuring that the charity's Christmas week runs smoothly. This includes providing guidance and direction to less experienced volunteers, and ensuring that the volunteers are co-ordinated and work as a team. A minimum of 2 years volunteering experience with us is required before applying to be a supervisor.
Calling all Chefs!
Caring at Christmas are desperate for chefs/cooks, if you can dedicate a shift or two to the shelter and are able to attend two briefings before Christmas then please contact us.
Please only apply if you are sure you can commit to the dates and the task
as this is a vital area of the running of the shelter.
Helping throughout the year
We also need volunteers to help with operating the charity throughout the year. We are particularly interested if you are able to give up some time to help us on a regular basis, either throughout the year or in the months running up to Christmas. Contact Us
Specialist volunteer help through out the year
Caring at Christmas is also looking for volunteers who specialise in certain fields; please let us know if you as an individual or as a company/organisation feel you can assist in these areas:
Other ways you can help
There are lots of ways you can support Caring at Christmas. Below are a few suggestions:
- A sponsored bike ride
- The Bristol Half Marathon 2013
- Charity football match
- Choir/bands/musicians singing and street collection on our behalf (please contact us first so we can obtain Bristol City Council license)
- Organize your own local pub quiz
- School or work dress down/casual days
- Instead of sending Christmas cards donate the money saved to Caring at Christmas
- Collection pot at the reception of your work place/school/shop
We are always open to new ideas on how to improve the quality and range of our services so please feel free to make suggestions.