Our volunteers come from a wide range of backgrounds.

Many have used our services in the past or have a family member affected by our causes; others just want to give their time to help others in the local community.

To find out about what volunteering with us is like and the different opportunities we offer, take a look at our volunteer leaflet.

Whatever your background, we are keen to hear from you!


To make the process as easy as possible, volunteering applications are handled centrally. Download an application form here and email it to volunteering@richmondfellowship.org.uk.

What happens next?

You will be asked to provide the names of two referees and have an assessment meeting. We’ll supply you with an outline of the role you’ll be undertaking and a volunteer agreement. We want to match your motivation and expectations to what we need from a volunteer.

We’re committed to your wellbeing while you volunteer with us. Our aim is to ensure that your time, skills and commitment are used to the benefit of all and that you enjoy the time you spend with us.

“Volunteering allowed me to put my knowledge into practice, BUILD MY CONFIDENCE and gain a deeper understanding of how mental health services operate.”

“You get more out of it than you put in. IT’S GREAT TO BE PART OF THE VOLUNTEER COMMUNITY and I have made some lasting friendships here.”

“Volunteering at Derby City Life Links with the staff GIVES ME A SENSE OF BELONGING.”

Volunteering FAQS

We’ve answered our most frequently asked questions – please get in touch if your query isn’t answered.

How long does the process take?

The process from sending in an application to starting to volunteer with us generally takes around eight weeks but this can vary. This is due to waiting for references, DBS check and your availability to attend our mandatory training. Completing relevant forms and submitting ID documents promptly can help speed up this process.

Is there an age limit to volunteering?

Generally you need to be over the age of 18 to volunteer with us; however, in our young people’s services, we do have volunteer opportunities for under 18s.

What will I be doing?

There are many different roles and responsibilities undertaken by our volunteers and often no two days are the same. We aim to fit your experience, skills and motivation to the different types of volunteer roles that we have. Talk to your local service for more details.

Do I need to do a DBS check?

Yes. All volunteers are required to undergo an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. We will cover the cost of this.

What happens if I have a criminal record, will this affect my chance of volunteering?

A criminal record should not stop you from volunteering with us; however, it will be assessed on an individual basis and may depend on the type of role you are applying for.

Would a disability stop me from volunteering?

We will endeavour to make any reasonable adjustments we can to meet your needs; however, in some services, there may be restrictions that may not make this possible. Please contact the specific services you would like to volunteer at for more details.

How many hours do I need to volunteer for?

We’re grateful for whatever time you’re able to give. The amount of time needed is different for each volunteering opportunity. This will be discussed and agreed with you during the application process. All we ask is that you are consistent in your commitment and let us know as soon as possible if your circumstances change.

Will I get travel costs? What expenses are covered?

We can’t make payments or offer accommodation to you for undertaking voluntary work for us. However, we will reimburse you for legitimate expenses you’ve incurred, such as agreed travel costs.

What training opportunities are there?

All volunteers are required to undertake induction training prior to starting the role and any relevant additional training that you require in order to undertake your role with confidence. Training will vary between services.

What support do you provide?

As a volunteer, you will be provided with a named person who will meet with you regularly to discuss your volunteering and any successes or problems. We will do our best to help you develop and enjoy your volunteering role with us.

Will my volunteering affect my benefits?

It is your responsibility to check how volunteering with us might affect any benefits you are receiving and to speak to your benefits advisor.

Can I get a reference from you when I apply for employment?

We only offer references after you have volunteered for us for over three months.

Do I get priority when applying for internal vacancies?

Vacancies will we advertised on all partner websites, and you will be able to apply but volunteers are not given priority. You will be expected to follow the standard staff recruitment process the same as everyone else.

How does Recovery Focus protect my personal data?

Recovery Focus is committed to protecting the privacy and security of your personal information. As the organisation you are applying to volunteer for we collect your personal data and are a “data controller”.

Our full privacy notice is available for download here.

Find out more

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