The difference you can make

volunteer reading with two childrenReasons for volunteering

Volunteers give their time for many reasons:

  • To make a difference to a family’s life
  • Give something back to their local community
  • Return the support they once received from Home-Start
  • Share a similar experience
  • Boost their confidence
  • Prepare for returning to work or to progress their career
  • Because they have time to spare

Our volunteers get a lot out of helping children and families and often continue volunteering for a number of years.

Many of our volunteers have used their experience as a stepping stone to paid employment.

The difference volunteers make

Our volunteers play a vital role in releasing the potential of parents, and giving children the best possible start in life.  Our dedicated volunteers are making a real difference to the lives of children and families in communities across the UK.

Last year more than 90% of the families our volunteers had supported said they felt:

  • more involved in their children’s development
  • their children’s emotional and physical health and well being had improved
  • better able to manage their children’s behaviour
  • less isolated
  • less stressed
  • more able to cope with day-to-day running of the house
  • they were using local services more

Volunteer stories

Here are what some of our volunteers have said about their experience:

 I have been a sounding board, a facilitator, a bottle giver, a play mate, a boundary giver, a friend- all at the same time. At times it is tiring and frustrating and then at other times there is laughter and love. I continue to volunteer with Home-Start because amongst witnessing and experiencing all these difficulties and pleasures with a family, seeing how a situation can change for the better, and knowing that I am playing some small part in this, is incredibly rewarding.

Volunteering at Home-Start with a family really develops your listening skills- as any opinions you have need to be kept to yourself. This I found difficult to start with but now I always use this skill and find it very rewarding.

volunteer stories

I feel excited and honoured to be part of something which allows families and individuals to develop independence and blossom in strength and confidence.

Being a Home-Start volunteer is a privilege as you become part of another family’s life and this has given me perspective outside my own life experience.  Just being there for the families I support is simply what motivates me, as this is often what they don’t have present in their lives.
Rachel (now a qualified social worker after using her volunteering experience as part of her application)

Volunteering for our Home Visiting Service

(Due to the current restrictions we are unable to take any new volunteers- please do get in contact, by email at, if you’d like us to save your details for once we are able to do so).

  • Parent-focused service primarily taking place in the families’ own home
  • Service offered to families with at least one child under five who need some support to help meet the needs of their children, but do not have complex or multiple problems
  • After attending a matching visit with their Coordinator, volunteers visit families for approximately three months
  • Visits are 2-3 hours a week with a focus on one or two achievable objectives
  • Volunteer Role:   to support the parent with issues such as; isolation – e.g. helping parents to identify and engage with a local baby group, toddler behavioural issues, cooking healthy meals on a budget
  • Volunteers receive regular supervision

trusteed and volunteers

Other volunteering opportunities

We sometimes have other volunteering opportunities, if you would like to volunteer with us in a different capacity then do get in touch and we will happily discuss this with you. Please send queries to