Community Volunteering support

Welcome to the Hospice UK online resource hub for community volunteering.
Find out more about community volunteering support
The catalyst for developing this resource was the growing involvement of hospice volunteers providing support to people with palliative and end of life care needs, their families and carers in the community.

This support involves a spectrum of volunteering approaches from those managed by staff, to those led by volunteers. This represents a significant change in hospice volunteering, with community volunteers working alone with much less onsite day-to-day supervision from staff than would be usual in inpatient and day care hospice settings.

However, there was little information about the extent and nature of such volunteering across the UK and no central reference point where hospices interested in developing community volunteering programmes might find information. 

This led to a Hospice UK project that initially undertook a study of hospice community volunteering similar to Hospice Neighbours and Compassionate Neighbours, with the aim of creating a central signposting resource.

This project has built upon work already undertaken in the children’s hospice and palliative care sector by Together for Short Lives, which developed and piloted resources, Together We Can, for volunteers supporting families at home caring for a child with a life-limiting condition.

About the resource hub

This resource hub is informed by evidence gathered from an analysis of hospice community volunteering undertaken by Hospice UK. Surveys and interviews were carried out across the Hospice UK membership.

This explored the type and range of community volunteering support offered, structures, management and costs, volunteer preparation and training, policies and support, and the benefits and drawbacks.  A report summarising the findings can be found [here].

It is important the resource hub recognises and respects the diversity of hospice organisations and approaches to community volunteering. Significant experience already exists within the UK hospice sector.

This resource hub, therefore, is not about ‘reinventing the wheel’ but rather brings together the knowledge from those with experience in this field and signposts readers to available information, organisations and people willing to help. 

Use the resource hub

Definitions, language and terminology

What do we mean?
What do we mean by volunteering? >

Training, support and supervision

How do you train your volunteers?
Things to think about >

Management structures and costs

Look at Management structures and costs
Get more information and resources >

Monitoring, evaluation and reporting

Monitoring and evaluation
Measure outcomes >

What does hospice care mean to you?