Volunteers are an important part of our work at Freedom and make up a large part of our regular staff, working in all areas of our charity.

Not only is volunteering integral to the work we do in North Devon, there are multiple benefits for our volunteers too! Volunteering has been shown to help increase self-confidence and feelings of self-worth, reduce stress, make new friends, learn new skills and even advance your career. Take a look at our article about volunteering to learn more about why these opportunities are so beneficial to you and us.

We currently have vacancies in most areas of our work, full details of volunteer duties in each area, along with a link to application forms for those who are interested in applying for any of the roles are listed below.

Kitchen Volunteers - 3 roles available

Our kitchen staff create a 3-course meal each day to help people who are experiencing food poverty and may not eat without our help. The role includes:

Working with a team of people under the supervision of the kitchen manager to help prepare and serve a 3-course meal. 

Role Description

The main aspects of the role will involve:

  • Working alongside the kitchen manager to prepare a 3-course meal
  • Serving teas and coffees
  • Serving the hot meal
  • Preparing the kitchen for food service and clearing up at the end of the day
  • Washing up using a commercial dishwasher

Person specification

Training will be provided for the right person however the ideal individual would:  

  • Have a positive outlook and a non-judgemental attitude
  • Be welcoming and accepting of others
  • Have a basic understanding of personal and kitchen hygiene
  • Work well in a team
  • Be physically fit (this is essential as the kitchen is a busy working environment)
  • Have good communication skills
  • Be willing to abide by kitchen safety standards
  • Wear suitable clothing i.e. sensible footwear and minimal jewellery – aprons, hats and T-shirts will be provided. Please note that you cannot wear nail varnish in the kitchen.

If you are interested in volunteering in our kitchen, please complete the online application form.

Safe Sleep Kitchen Volunteer - 6 evening roles and 8 morning roles

This volunteer role is part of the Safe Sleep project at the Freedom Centre and you will be working alongside the staff team providing support to those who are homeless. Safe Sleep is a service commissioned by the North Devon District Council to provide safe accommodation to those who are rough sleeping during the winter months. It is part of a bigger initiative to work with people and support them into suitable and stable accommodation wherever possible.

This volunteer role is primarily in the kitchen providing hot meals for people accessing the service. You will be part of a team but it will most likely involve working unsupervised in the kitchen to serve hot drinks and provide meals from either food donations from local supermarkets and restaurants or using pre–prepared food from the kitchen.

 

Role Description

The role will ultimately be under the supervision of the Housing Manager but on a day to day basis will work with the guidance of the Safe Sleep support team.

The main aspects of the role will involve:

  • Working under the supervision of the Safe Sleep support staff to provide a hot meal for up to 20 people
  • Serving teas and coffees
  • Serving the hot meal
  • Preparing kitchen for food service and clearing up at the end of the shift
  • Washing up using commercial dishwasher and leaving the kitchen clean and tidy for the next shift
  • Shifts available are either 8pm – 11pm to provide evening meal or 6am – 8am to provide breakfast

 

Person specification

Training will be provided for the right person however the ideal individual would:  

  • Have a positive outlook and a non-judgemental attitude
  • Be welcoming and accepting of others
  • Be confident and competent in a catering environment
  • Have a good understanding of personal hygiene
  • Have a clear understanding of food safety standards in the kitchen and how to apply them
  • Be willing to abide by kitchen safety standards and our policies and procedures
  • Be adaptable and work well in a small team
  • Be physically fit (this is essential as the kitchen is a busy working environment)
  • Have good communication skills
  • Wear suitable clothing i.e. sensible footwear and minimal jewellery. Please note that you cannot wear nail varnish in the kitchen

Please note: Aprons, hats and t-shirts are supplied and will need to be worn to comply with food hygiene regulations.

If you are interested in volunteering with the Safe Sleep Service, please complete the online application form.

Drop-in General Support Volunteer - 5 roles available

This volunteer role is at the Freedom Centre with the project known as the Freedom Drop-in which is a multi-functional, open access centre for adults suffering from deprivation of any kind. This volunteer role involves assisting vulnerable adults by working alongside the staff support team.

Beneficiaries of the Freedom Drop-in are varied but include those who are currently going through some tough times. They could be homeless, have a history of substance use, have a history of offending behaviour, be experiencing poor mental health or suffering from social exclusion, poverty or deprivation of any kind.

This role is under the supervision of the Freedom Drop-in Team Leader & deputy and is to provide a friendly welcome to help people who use our services feel relaxed and comfortable.

The role includes:

  • Managing the support ‘drop-in reception desk’ which administers food parcels, showers & clothes store vouchers
  • Oversee the use of the showers, clothes store and telephones
  • Answer internal calls to the ‘drop-in reception desk’
  • Help maintain accurate records of client progress
  • The provision of information on a broad range of topics
  • Making referrals to other agencies
  • Signposting and working on behalf of clients as appropriate

Person specification

Training will be provided for the right person however the ideal individual would:  

  • Have experience of working with vulnerable and disadvantaged individuals
  • Have a mature and positive outlook and a non-judgemental attitude
  • Be welcoming and accepting of others
  • Understand the importance of confidentiality, data protection and safeguarding
  • Have an understanding of the issues affecting people experiencing difficult times
  • Be computer literate and have experience of using MS Office packages
  • Have a good telephone manner and an ability to communicate well with others
  • Be sympathetic and accepting of the Christian ethos of the organisation
  • Understand how to manage and maintain professional boundaries with service users

If you are interested in becoming a drop-in general support volunteer, please complete the online application form.

Drop-in Computer Support Volunteer - 4 roles available

This volunteer role is at the Freedom Centre - a multi-functional, open access centre for adults suffering from deprivation of any kind. This volunteer role involves assisting vulnerable adults by working alongside the staff support team.

Beneficiaries of the Freedom Drop-in are varied but include those who are currently going through some tough times. They could be homeless, have a history of substance use, have a history of offending behaviour, be experiencing poor mental health or suffering from social exclusion, poverty or deprivation of any kind. This role is about providing a friendly welcome to help people who use our computers feel relaxed and comfortable while offering assistance when needed to complete a number of computer-related tasks.

The role includes:

  • Working one to one with individuals to provide computer support when needed
  • Be able to share your understanding of MS office software to those who may have no experience
  • Assist with writing C.V.’s and be able to help with online job applications
  • Assist and teach how to search online for things such as housing, job search, training & education etc.
  • Assist with setting up accounts for Find A Job, Homeswapper, North Devon Homechoice etc.
  • Assist with online benefit applications

Person specification

Training will be provided for the right person however the ideal individual would:  

  • Have experience of working with vulnerable and disadvantaged individuals
  • Have a mature and positive outlook and a non-judgemental attitude
  • Be welcoming and accepting of others
  • Understand the importance of confidentiality, data protection and safeguarding
  • Have an understanding of the issues affecting people experiencing difficult times
  • Be computer literate and have experience of using MS Office packages
  • Be able to teach and share your computer and online knowledge in an easy to understand way
  • Be sympathetic and accepting of the Christian ethos of the organisation
  • Understand how to manage and maintain professional boundaries with service users

If you are interested in becoming a computer support volunteer, please complete the online application form.

Reception Volunteers - 3 roles available

The receptionist’s role is considered a very important part of the team at the Freedom Centre. We get many different people through the door at the Freedom Centre ranging from beneficiaries of the day centre to visitors to local church leaders to project supporters. As the first point of contact at the Freedom Centre, the receptionist must ensure that everyone is welcomed and treated with respect regardless of their reason for visiting the centre.

This role includes:

  • Being the first point of contact at reception
  • Signing-in visitors and gym members
  • Entering daily sign-in into an Excel spreadsheet and/or Access database
  • Thank-you letters
  • Entering new gym members and making gym cards
  • General administration tasks to include, printing and cutting meal vouchers, printing out general forms, trimming paper for telephone message sheets, scrap paper, etc.

Person specification

To maintain that important first impression we consider the following experience and personal qualities essential for the reception role:

  • The individual must be open-minded and have the ability to maintain a non-judgemental and respectful attitude
  • Be computer literate with experience in using MS Office software
  • Have good personal presentation – clean & tidy with a friendly and welcoming attitude
  • Be polite and professional at all times
  • Have good verbal communication skills
  • Have experience of working with members of the public
  • Have the ability to keep smiling when it gets busy!

If you are interested in volunteering on our reception desk, please complete the online application form.

Food Collection Volunteers - 4 roles available

*This role requires the volunteer to use their own car and have a driving license

Our desire is to collect good quality food and consumables that would otherwise be sent to landfill and to redistribute to people in need in our community. We are working with a number of food and grocery retailers in Barnstaple and are looking for volunteers to collect from these outlets and bring to the Freedom Centre.

The role includes:

  • Collecting from a designated retailer at an agreed time for one day each week
  • Loading your car with the donations
  • Bringing the food directly to the Freedom Centre
  • Represent Freedom Community Alliance to the retailer

Person specification

Training will be provided for the right person however the ideal individual would:  

  • Be punctual
  • Be reliable
  • Be trustworthy
  • Have a basic understanding of personal and food hygiene
  • Be polite and have good people skills
  • Have good communication skills
  • Be physically fit and in good health as this role requires that you are able to load the donations into your car unaided
  • Be willing to abide by the guidelines of the food retailer when handling the donations and returning to the Freedom Centre

If you are interested in becoming a food collection volunteer, please complete the online application form.

eBay and Social Enterprise Volunteer - 2 roles available

This volunteer role in Freedom Social Enterprises (FSE) is vital in helping our social business to become sustainable. FSE provides work opportunities to vulnerable and long-term unemployed adults to help them gain confidence and new skills and help them back to job readiness. All profits generated are reinvested or donated to the work of the charity.

We have a good reputation on eBay as being a Top Rated Seller which comes from attention to detail, giving clear descriptions and prompt service. It is our aim to maintain this status consistently.

The role includes:

  • Sort, grade and select stock for sale.
  • If necessary iron clothes before photographing
  • Photograph items to be listed on eBay
  • List items on Auctiva to be uploaded to eBay for selling
  • Print packing slip and labels off the list from eBay and pack items securely
  • Research interesting items for the best way to sell
  • Stock check items listed on eBay
  • Be willing to work with individuals who are on unpaid work placements or other work programmes – some of whom may have a history of offending behaviour, homelessness or drug or alcohol abuse
  • Sessions available Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday mornings

Person specification

We consider the following personal qualities desirable for this role: 

  • Able to maintain confidentiality
  • Organised, efficient with attention to detail
  • Polite and professional at all times
  • Good written & communication skills
  • Computer and IT literate
  • Ability to work on own initiative (pick up from where left off)
  • Flexible & able to work well within a team and without supervision
  • Willing to learn and abide by our own procedure and best practise for any particular activity
  • Previous eBay experience preferable but not essential

If you are interested in becoming an eBay and Social Enterprise volunteer, please complete the online application form.