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Volunteering in Basingstoke and Deane

It's Volunteers' Week! Running from Monday 3 to Sunday 9 June, this is a time to celebrate the incredible impact volunteers have on our communities and encourage new people to get involved. This year marks the 40th anniversary of Volunteers' Week, making it even more special.

Have you ever considered volunteering, but felt unsure where to start?

Why volunteer?

Volunteering is a hugely rewarding experience. It can be a great opportunity to give back to your community, support causes you are passionate about and gain new experiences. It can be a good way to meet new people and make friends too. But don’t just take our word for it. We have spoken to a variety of volunteers in Basingstoke and Deane and here’s what they had to say:

Emily, Girlguide Leader and Peer Educator

“I've volunteered with Girlguiding UK for five years having been involved with the charity since I was five. I started as a young leader and then began as an adult helper at 18, going onto complete by Leadership Qualification at 21. I am now a Guide Leader, Peer Educator and am working on my Queen's Guide Award as well as holding a co-ordinator role at county level. Volunteering at Girlguiding has given me so many invaluable opportunities and supported my personal and professional growth. I have become confident talking to young people and adults in many different contexts. I have also been able to use many of the skills I have developed including leadership, facilitation, safeguarding, and risk management in my work. This voluntary work is hugely fulfilling and has a positive impact on my wellbeing as I have been able to watch, and support, young people's confidence grow while supporting their extra-curricular development as I deliver the programme to develop skills, behaviours, and work towards awards.”

Polly, Mencap Trustee

“I’ve been volunteering for Basingstoke Mencap in my trustee role since June 2022 and it’s been a deeply personal and rewarding experience.

When I was approached by the then chairman, he had no idea that both my mum (now retired) and late mother-in-law had both worked with children and young adults with learning disabilities. This opportunity felt like a natural way to honour their legacy, by continuing to contribute to the work they loved.

The most fulfilling aspect of being a trustee is getting to know our members and witnessing the real-life impact that our support and social activities have on their lives. It’s also heartening to see the commitment and energy that the team and volunteers dedicate to bettering the lives of people in our community.

We are actively recruiting volunteers across all areas of the charity, so if you feel like you’d like to enrich your life by dedicating some time, please do get in touch via”

Serena, Exit 6

“Basingstoke has a wonderful creative community and Exit 6 film festival is a great example of this. This short film festival programmes 45 to 50 high-quality films, all shown in Vue cinema, from across the world, with accompanying activity throughout the day and a wonderful party at the end. The festival is now BIFA qualifying, meaning that films that are selected and shown are eligible for the industry recognised British Independent Film Awards.

I’m very lucky to personally know the founders who are all extremely experienced in the film industry and, having attended a few of the festivals, I was keen to get involved. The festival is fully run by volunteers who are all passionate about film and showcasing Basingstoke as the great hub of creativity that it is.

The team welcomed me on board with great support. I’ve since had various roles from volunteer co-ordinator through to party planner and in each I’ve been able to learn something new and enjoy the festival at the same time. While the festival is one day the planning is year-round and there is always room for more help with either. You can easily find out how on the website! 

Exit 6 is a fantastic day and evening out and I encourage everyone to come along to experience the truly outstanding quality of short films that are being made by passionate filmmakers.”

Gareth, Football Coach

“I have been a football coach for two years now, starting in June 2022. I am a parent volunteer football coach and got into volunteering as my son wanted to play for a football team. It’s an important role as the number of young people looking for a team far exceeds the number of teams available so by volunteering I am enabling young people to be involved in sport, have fun and make new friends.

It’s a role I enjoy, especially seeing the players grow and develop, not just as football players, but grow as individuals, grow as a team, and become more confident. Coaching is an important role as you are not only helping young people develop skills, we are teaching them skills for life, such as positive communication, team work and respect (for themselves, team mates, opposition, parents and officials).

It allows me to develop as a person, having to take coaching, safeguarding and first aid courses, but more importantly, it introduces you to a new community, a new ‘football family’ within your own team, your club, and the league in which the team plays.

It’s a very rewarding role that has its challenges but the positives far outweigh the negatives.”

Volunteer at Willis Museum and Sainsbury Gallery

“Why do I volunteer?  Initially, to make constructive and sociable use of the time granted to me by retirement from professional life - there was a gap to fill!  Beyond that, what keeps me in voluntary work is the strong sense of contribution and involvement, meeting people (the public), working in a team, learning about a wide range of historic and artistic subjects (keep your ears open when talking to visitors), giving back, however modestly, to the community and broadening my social life. My connectivity with Basingstoke has multiplied many times over since I started volunteering.”

Where to start

Inspired by the stories above? Knowing where to start can sometimes be the trickiest bit. Here are our top tips on how to get started with your volunteering journey:

  1. Identify your skills and interests. Think about what you are passionate about, what you enjoy doing and what you’re good at.
  2. Work out how much time you are willing to contribute. Some roles require regular commitment whereas there are other roles you can pick up as and when you are available.
  3. If you are currently working, check whether your employer offers corporate volunteering opportunities.
  4. Reach out to your local volunteer centre, Basingstoke Voluntary Action. They have a dedicated page on their website that includes hundreds of opportunities for people to browse through, as well as taster workshops to give people an idea of what volunteering can involve. They also run drop-ins for an in-person chat. More information available on their website.
  5. Look directly on the websites of organisations you are interested in for example, the National Trust or Hampshire Cultural Trust and get in touch.

Corporate volunteering

Many companies are embracing corporate volunteering programs, allowing employees to dedicate time during work hours or participate in team-building volunteer events. It's a fantastic way to give back while building a stronger, more engaged workforce.

Corporate volunteering can benefit the community by providing much needed support, bringing a fresh perspective and skills whilst building stronger communities.

Businesses providing corporate volunteering opportunities can also see positive impacts including increased teamwork, motivation and engagement and working closer with the community in which they are operating.

Basingstoke Voluntary Action can support with finding corporate volunteering opportunities. Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council organise and deliver corporate volunteer days undertaking practical conservation work at the council's green spaces and Inspero has corporate volunteering opportunities helping to develop the new area to its award-winning Kempshott Community Garden. 

Opportunities in Basingstoke and Deane

There are plenty of opportunities to volunteer in Basingstoke and Deane and you may be surprised by the things you can get involved with, from befriending lonely individuals to lending a hand at a cultural institution, your unique talents and interests can make a real difference. Below are just some of the opportunities we know of, but we know there are plenty more!

Basingstoke Voluntary Action has a list of opportunities on their website

Arts and culture

Help create memories for visitors, make friends and learn new skills as a Milestones volunteer with Hampshire Cultural Trust. Their roles are open to all! With a range of duties, you could teach key skills as a Make Do and Mend leader, clock on as a Victorian or WWII policeman or dish out sweet rations at the 1940s sweet shop.

Be part of a vibrant team and volunteer at Basing House! A historic site with vast, beautiful grounds and a breathtaking barn - one of the only Tudor buildings of its kind to have survived the impact of the English Civil War. With extensive 14-acres of grounds, there is plenty to explore and discover here. There are also beautiful views of Basingstoke from the platform overlooking the ruins! Duties may include front of house responsibilities, event work or customer service.

Volunteer opportunities are also available at National Trust properties The Vyne and Sandham Memorial Chapel, both based in the borough.

From making or sourcing costumes to selling programmes, there are many ways you can volunteer with BATS.

Help and care for people

Volunteers at Hampshire Hospitals work alongside skilled staff members to support in a variety of different areas from ward support to assisting on events. Support clients by volunteering with Basingstoke NeighbourCare and become a driver, befriender or assist with community cafes and social groups. Have fun, meet new friends and gain valuable experience with roles to suit your interests and experience with Headway, a local charity supporting people living with brain injury. A variety of volunteering opportunities are available at Basingstoke Young Carers, each with its unique way of supporting young carers and their families. There are so many ways you can get involved as a St. Michael’s Hospice volunteer, whether it is at the hospice, in the community or in one of their shops.


No experience needed to volunteer with Basingstoke Parkrun and there are a range of roles to choose from. You can volunteer alone or team up with someone else. Many local sports clubs also rely on volunteers.


Hands-on wildlife conservation-oriented tasks are available with Basingstoke Conservation Volunteers, usually on nature reserves or other important areas for the local natural environment.

This summer, discover the joy of giving back. Explore the exciting possibilities above and find the perfect volunteer role to enrich your life and positively impact your community!

June 2024

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