Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of people volunteer?
Our volunteers reflect the diversity of the three boroughs we serve. Our youngest volunteers are 14 years old and work in our Charity Shops. Our oldest volunteers are in their 90s.
Is there a minimum or maximum age?
There are some age restrictions and these may be determined by our insurers. The minimum age to volunteer within the organisation is 14. Volunteers of that age can help with fundraising events or volunteer in a shop. Our shop volunteers aged 18 and under are supervised by DBS checked staff on the premises. 18 -year-olds can volunteer in our Front of House role, welcoming people into the building and serving in our coffee shop. The minimum age for volunteering in the In-patient Unit, in patients’ own homes or in the Day Services is 18. There is no maximum age.
Is there a minimum amount of time you take volunteers on for?
Some roles have a lengthy training programme which does cost us quite a lot of money to deliver, so we prefer that people who take those roles are able to stay with us for a minimum period after the training is complete. However, there are roles that require less training and we are happy to offer alternative roles if you are unable to stay with us for a minimum period.
What kind of people are you recruiting to volunteer at NLH?
- Ability to understand and empathise
- Ability to work well with others
- Ability to respect all cultures, lifestyles and beliefs
What training do you provide?
Different roles require different levels of training.All our volunteers need to complete our online induction prior to starting.Don’t worry if you have no internet access, or are not computer confident, we can help you with this. Some further training will be a mixture of face-to-face, online and on-the-job. Certain roles will require additional training that could take up to five days.
I work full time - can I still volunteer?
Yes, we are a 24/7 operation so there are plenty of opportunities to volunteer at any time; however, some roles may be available only at certain times, and some training may be delivered during normal working hours.
I am thinking about volunteering at NLH because I hope to study nursing/medicine/another therapy.
That is great! You may be interested in our Summer or Autumn School, which are aimed at those aged 15-19 considering a career in medicine, nursing or health and social care. The three day workshop allows you to experience the work environment of the hospice, meet members of the health care team and enhance your CV. Sessions will cover the aims and principles of palliative care, understanding perspectives on death and dying, communication at the end of life and accessing support services. You can find out more information in our Education Prospectus.
I have recently been bereaved myself – will that exclude me from volunteering with patients?
This is definitely something we would want to talk to you about and check if you are ready; it may be that we find an alternative role for you until you are ready to work closely with patients and their families.
I am not a religious person – does that exclude me from volunteering at NLH?
NLH is a hospice for those of any faith or none. You can certainly volunteer if you are not a person of faith. All we ask is that you are respectful of difference. We recognise the richness in all kinds of difference, whether cultural, ethnic, age, sexual orientation, gender or religious difference. The difference that you bring is welcome. We look for an equal measure of respect for the difference you encounter in other people, whether patients, staff or other volunteers.