We’ve put together some frequently asked questions about applying to volunteer with Nottinghamshire Healthcare. If you have a question that isn’t on this page or in the role description advertised, please contact the team.
Do I need to be a volunteer to get involved in service change projects?
No. If a role is advertised on our opportunities page as being “Involvement in Service Change”, then you do not need to be a volunteer to get involved. Simply follow the instructions on description of the opportunity to register your interest.
Volunteers go through a specific recruitment and training process to be able to do their volunteer role within Nottinghamshire Healthcare. We assess the requirements of each request to our team as to whether it needs to be a voluntary role.
How do I apply to volunteer?
1. A volunteer must first be able to comply with the criteria below:
- be over 16 years old (Forensic Division is over 21)
- be reliable, trustworthy, motivated, friendly and flexible
- able to commit to a minimum of 4 hours per week
- to commit to at least 6 months with Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
- emotionally mature, the ability to deal with difficult situations and be sensitive to others
- you cannot volunteer formally whilst you are an inpatient, however you might be able to be involved in other ways, please give us a call on 0800 052 1415 to discuss this further.
2. See what roles are available on our opportunities page. If there is a suitable role, complete an application form and return it to the team.
3. When we receive an application form, we review the information on it against the role applied for. If successful, we will contact them via email or telephone to invite them to attend an interview. This may be in person or virtually. We will ask them to bring with them the approved forms of ID (PDF) to complete their Disclosure & Barring Service Check.
4. If they are successful at the interview we will contact them to discuss next steps, including training, induction and other key information about the role. DBS checks and references can take up to six weeks to be cleared, so their role may not commence until after this. We try to keep in regular contact with applicants through this registration period, but applicants can contact us at any time to find out what stage their registration is at.
5. Once everything has been completed we will contact them to agree on a start date and local induction.
What do volunteers do?
We have a wide range of volunteer roles in services across Nottinghamshire Healthcare. Volunteer roles enrich the service that we provide to patients and carers, and they support staff in their roles also.
Each volunteer placement has a volunteer role profile that describes what the role is and expectations of volunteers. You can see examples of roles we have available on our Opportunities page. For more information on a specific role, you can always contact the team.
What are the Involvement and Volunteering Centres?
The Involvement and Volunteering Centres are where most of the Involvement, Experience and Volunteering Team members are based. We work from the Centres and use them as a place to host meetings and projects. They act as a base for volunteers and are where we offer a lot of our face-to-face support from.
What is the NottsHC Volunteer Hub?
The Volunteer Hub is very similar to our Involvement and Volunteering Centres, but online. It is hosted on Microsoft Teams and is a place where all our current volunteers can interact, get in touch with the team and work collaboratively on projects. We post updates from our Trust and information from partner organisations too.
Can I get work experience for my educational course?
We are unable to help with any clinical/shadowing work, work experience or placements that are a requirement of an educational course. The Health Education England website may have suitable opportunities.
Who can I put as references on my application?
We usually ask for references from people who’ve known you for three years, preferably professionals and not friends or family members. If you’re not able to give the names of at least one person who meets this criteria, contact us as we may accept alternatives. Unfortunately, due to restrictions, we are not able to offer a “get to know you” period through the Involvement and Volunteering Centres as we previously did.
What documents do I need for my DBS check?
On your online DBS application, you can select which documents you can provide for your DBS check. For more information on what documents are needed, check the Disclosure & Barring Service site. You’ll then need to show documents to staff so we can verify them on the system.
I have a criminal record, can I still volunteer?
If you have a criminal record, we’d ask that you disclose this to us before we conduct a DBS check. For applicants with a forensic history, we would take these to a Mitigation Panel with representatives from HR, Safeguarding and the Volunteering Team. Any incidents are put into context and we review the risks associated with the volunteering placement you’re applying for.
What if I’m not suitable for the volunteer role I’m applying for?
We work hard to accommodate as many people as possible, which is why we ask all kinds of questions, not only the areas you would like to volunteer in but what other skills you have that might help us place you in a voluntary role.
Volunteering at Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust is highly competitive and it is not always possible to place everyone in the roles they would like. Sometimes people applying to be volunteers don’t have the right skills, experience or time commitment we are looking for.
Please be aware that at any time during the recruitment process – registration, interview, references and DBS checking and training – de-selection might happen. We would keep both you informed and of the reasons why.
If we are unable to place you in the role you applied for, we will endeavour to assist you in finding alternative volunteering roles, either in another setting or through the local Volunteer Centre.