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Volunteering at the heart of the Samaritans

5 February 2016

One of the organisations taking part in Big Volunteer is Samaritans. They are available around the clock, every single day of the year. You can talk to them any time you like, in your own way and in complete confidence about whatever’s getting to you.

Our funding helped Samaritans set up a national training programme in 2003 and funding is currently enabling the charity to trial ‘Freecall’; a free to caller helpline across 10 pilot areas across the UK.

samaritans-training-blogWhile Samaritans are one of our most well-known charities, all of the services they offer are provided by volunteers so they are totally dependent on volunteer support. Each branch of Samaritans is its own charity and there are 201 branches of Samaritans across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

In the South West of England, Samaritans has branches in 11 different areas that need volunteers of one kind or another (Barnstaple, Bristol, Bath, Exeter, Plymouth, Taunton, Torquay, Truro, Weston-super-Mare, Weymouth and Yeovil!). The listening volunteer role is one that we most associate with Samaritans, but branches also need people to help support their IT, fundraising, publicity and even help with statistical analysis.

Angela Reynolds, Volunteer Recruitment & Selection Officer at Samaritans says:

“Volunteers are at the heart of Samaritans. We welcome and value every volunteer, from all walks of life. We currently have over 21,000 volunteers who dedicate their time to help support people around the UK and ROI to find their way, through whatever is troubling them. Although we are a national charity, every single one of the services for our callers is run by volunteers that have been recruited at a local level. Volunteers are vital to the services we provide and branches are always on the lookout for local volunteers to join their branches.

“We want to encourage more people to volunteer for Big Lottery Fund projects. We know their success depends on more than just money; volunteering can make a real difference to your own life and the lives of those around you.

If you live in the South West of England, and want to apply or find out more about volunteering at any of those 11 different branches, please visit our website. If you have any questions about volunteering please email us.”

Samaritans branches around the UK have a host of volunteering opportunities, some of which (including those mentioned above) can found on our #BigVolunteer map.

If you’re not in the South West, our #BigVolunteer map has volunteer roles across the rest of the UK.

You can also share your volunteering stories on social media using #BigVolunteer

Good luck!

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