Community volunteer

Supporting Shannon Trust in the community

We are currently in the process of developing a series of pilot programmes that will be delivered in partnership with a number of services.


Our Community Volunteers will play a key role in supporting the successful delivery of each pilot, helping to co-ordinate delivery, manage relationships with key partners and provide ongoing support/training to our Volunteer Reading Coaches


By volunteering with us you will be helping deliver positive outcomes for our learners, their families and the wider community. This opportunity will provide you with a chance to develop your own knowledge and skills, whilst supporting Shannon Trust to reach greater number of people who may require support to improve their reading.


Objective(s) of role:


As a Shannon Trust volunteer you are at the heart of our organisation and play a vital role in supporting the delivery of our community based pilots. You will support a small team of Shannon Trust Reading Coaches who will be responsible for the delivery of Turning Pages reading sessions in the community. You will also help us to monitor ongoing progress and manage our relationships with key partners.



A broad outline of tasks and activities to be undertaken:


·       Holding regular meetings with Reading Coaches to support them in delivering Shannon Trust sessions using our Turning Pages resource.

·       Working closely with our Reading Coaches and local partners to plan, review and implement best practice delivery of the Turning Pages reading programme in the community, in accordance with the individual needs of learners.

·       Helping to review pilot delivery in your area and working with the Community Pilot Manager to recruit, induct and train new Reading Coaches as and when required.

·       Helping to plan/provide cover for any Reading Coach vacancies in the area and helping to raise awareness of Shannon Trust’s Turning Pages programme at relevant events.

·       Supporting our Reading Coaches to build and maintain the Turning Pages reading programme and providing an initial point of contact for ongoing support/guidance.

·       Keeping track of area progress and key issues and communicating themes/issues to the Community Pilot Manager so a joined up approach can be taken.

·       Supporting Reading Coaches in collecting outcome monitoring data for the learners and ensuring this is submitted to Shannon Trust.

·       Attending regular meetings with our Reading Coaches and key partners to discuss ongoing progress and consider areas for development.

·       Ensuring Reading Coaches have access to sufficient resources to undertake sessions e.g. monitoring stock levels and ordering new Shannon Trust materials where required.

·       This person would need to make sure referral pathways are in place, but they might also need to get the referrals from internal parthers (eg keyworkers) and match up potential learners with potential mentors?

·       Undertaking any additional training as required by our key partner agencies.

·       Adhering to organisational policies and procedures at all times, as well as those of partner agencies when work is taking place on their premises.


Who we are looking for:


We don't need you to have any formal qualifications to become a Shannon Trust volunteer. We provide full training on the Turning Pages approach. Successful applicants will however be subject to an enhanced DBS check before they take up their volunteering role.


As this programme is an 18 month pilot, it is also worth noting that our model may develop and evolve as things progress. Our volunteers will play a vital role in supporting this.


We're looking for people who:


  • Can inspire and support your volunteer team to develop the Turning Pages programme with the learner at the centre of all that we do.
  • Can coordinate the delivery of the reading programme in a professional and organised way, acting as a representative of Shannon Trust.
  • Can offer a non-judgmental approach to those accessing support through Shannon Trust to improve their reading.
  • Are able to give a regular, reliable commitment to volunteering and are able to offer some flexibility when/where needed.
  • Are able to effectively plan, manage their own time and prioritise key tasks.
  • Can present at meetings and events and positively share information around Shannon Trust developments.
  • Can support the development of our Reading Coaches
  • Are able to keep up to date with Shannon Trust news and communications and share relevant information.
  • Use and regularly monitor Shannon Trust outlook emails, use Microsoft Teams and other computer packages as required.


Training, Induction and Support


Shannon Trust provides a wide range of training for volunteers. All are expected to attend all mandatory training, some of which will be delivered on a face to face basis, and some which will take place online. The training will provide you with the knowledge and understanding of the values and visions of the charity, as well as practical support needed to undertake your role safely and effectively. In addition, you may be asked to undertake mandatory training as part of any partnership working agreements established with partnership agencies.


You will receive a thorough induction, as well as ongoing support and supervision from Shannon Trust throughout your time volunteering.


You will meet regularly with our Community Pilot Manager and will receive a formal review every 6 months to look at overall progress and identify any future areas for development.


The name of the person who the volunteer reports to:


You will report directly to our Community Pilot Manager


Location and volunteering hours:


This Community Volunteer post will be based in a particular area and will involve working to support our trained Reading Coaches based in partner agencies.


We would not set a specific limit on the time you are able to give, but we would usually ask our volunteers to give approximately 7 to 14 hours a month, spread over 2 to 4 days. As the pilot progresses, we will seek your feedback around whether this is the correct amount of time required for the role.


Given the different needs of our learners/partners this may not be a role in which activities are always be able take place on a set day or time each week. A degree of flexibility would subsequently be extremely advantageous.


Benefits to you:


Becoming a Shannon Trust Reading Coach will provide you with a number of benefits which can you help you to develop both your personal and professional skills:


·       Receiving ongoing training and supervision to support you in fulfilling your role.

·       Developing your knowledge of literacy and reading support approaches (e.g phonics).

·       Developing your IT skills and expanding your knowledge of using up to date packages.

·       An opportunity to develop team coordination skills

·       Opportunities to build positive relationships with learners, Shannon Trust Staff/Volunteers and other key stakeholders.

·       Developing your knowledge of local and organisational policies and procedures.

·       Supporting the delivery of improved outcomes for learners, families and the wider community, and supporting delivery of an independent evaluation.

·       Helping Shannon Trust to develop a new and effective way of working, and which will help us to reach more people who need our support.


Expenses and insurance:


You'll be able to claim back all reasonable out of pocket expenses and be covered by our public liability insurance.

Current vacancies
  • Chelmsford
  • Camberwell
  • Greenwich
  • Islington
  • Redbridge

Download and complete this application form stating which of the above positions you wish to apply for and return to

Next training dates
Community volunteer training
Dates to be confirmed
Role description

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