Frequently asked questions

Got questions about volunteering with us? We're here to provide answers and help you get involved with Alzheimer’s Research UK.

If you have a question that isn’t answered below, don’t worry! Just drop us a line by contacting us on 0300 111 5555 or email volunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.org.

Why should I volunteer?

People choose to volunteer for many different reasons. Giving back to a community; making a difference to the people around them; developing new skills; building upon existing knowledge; boosting confidence; feeling valued and part of a team; enhancing career opportunities; socialising and making new friends – these are just some of the reasons that motivate people to volunteer. There’s lots of evidence that volunteering has a positive impact on health too. Volunteering at Alzheimer’s Research UK provides a way for people to contribute to our vision of a world that is free from the harm, fear and heartbreak of dementia.

How much time is required to volunteer?

Each of our volunteering opportunities requires a different amount of time and level of commitment. One-off or one-day opportunities often require a commitment of a few hours up to a whole day, depending upon the role. Other opportunities may look for a few hours once a week or only a few hours every month, quarter or year. Please read the information on the opportunity page to find out more.

Where & when will my volunteering take place?

This depends upon the role you choose. Some opportunities are one-off events at a specific location, whereas others take place throughout your local area over days, weeks, months or years. Other opportunities are flexible and can involve you volunteering remotely at a time or place that fits around your schedule. Please read the information on the opportunity page to find out more.

How do I get to and from my volunteering location?

Guidance on travelling to/from locations will be provided where relevant. Walking, cycling and public transport are usually advised, securing advanced, cheaper tickets where possible. Use of a car may be necessary in some circumstances. On almost all occasions it is your own responsibility to arrange transport to/from the volunteering locations.

How do I apply/register/sign-up?

All Alzheimer’s Research UK volunteering opportunities can be found here on our website: Volunteering or in this brochure. Please follow the enquiry or application process for the relevant opportunity. If the application process proves difficult, please contact us on 0300 111 5555 or volunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.org.

When will I next hear from you?

You’ll receive a reply from us after you complete an enquiry or application form. This will include details of next steps – we might encourage you to read the FAQs, role description, speak with a member of staff or complete an application form. Depending upon the role, you may then be sent details about when/how to undertake the volunteering opportunity or we will do our best to keep you up-to-date as we progress your application (this may involve taking up references for some roles).

Why do you ask for references?

References can help to provide an independent perspective of skills, reliability and attitude. This information helps create a picture of whether the role is suited to the volunteer and vice versa. Some roles that involve financial handling, leadership or reputational impact may require references, where others may not. Alzheimer’s Research UK takes a considered approach which is consistent and equitable for all volunteers.

Can you provide me with a reference?

Alzheimer’s Research UK can confirm the start and end date of your volunteering involvement. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide personal or character references.

What training/support/resources will I receive?

Training provided is relevant to the requirements of the role. Training may be delivered on the day of the event if a one-off opportunity e.g. Cheer Squad or as part of the onboarding/induction process prior to your role begins, e.g. Community Speaker. Some training may be delivered face-to-face whereas other opportunities may involve completing online modules. Support will be provided by your staff contact or by an alternative staff member as necessary. Relevant resources will be made available to you in advance of undertaking your opportunity or on the day as is necessary.

Can I volunteer if I am under 18?

At present, our volunteering opportunities are available to those aged eighteen (18) years-old or above. We aim to provide suitable opportunities for those aged 16 or 17 at some stage in the future. This will be clearly displayed on the website and we will require a parental/guardian consent form to be completed.

Can I volunteer together with my friends or family?

At some of our one-off/one-day opportunities you may wish to get your friends and family involved as volunteers and volunteer alongside them. Where this is possible, we will endeavor to include space on the application form for you to add the names of those you wish to volunteer alongside. If this option isn’t available, staff will seek to accommodate your requests where possible. It is important that all friends and family have individually registered to volunteer for the opportunity, as per the instructions on the opportunity page.

Does volunteering affect my benefits?

You can volunteer if in receipt of benefits, however there may be some rules to follow. For more information, please visit Citizen Advice (www.citizensadvice.org.uk), NCVO (www.ncvo.org.uk) or your local Volunteer Centre.

I’ve got a criminal record – can I still volunteer?

Having a criminal record doesn’t automatically prevent you from volunteering with us. Each application is judged on its merit and suitability for the role. If we believe your specific criminal conviction is cause for discussion, we will contact you during the application process.

What will I need (to bring) when I volunteer?

Most equipment and other resources will be provided by us. The role description will highlight any equipment needed e.g. you may require access to a computer or the internet. Your staff contact will provide guidance on advisable clothing or equipment to ensure you have a positive experience when volunteering.

Will I be insured while volunteering?

Alzheimer’s Research UK’s public and employer’s liability insurance policies provide cover for the activities of volunteers. This insurance does not cover personal belongings. Volunteers using their own vehicles for the course of carrying out their role are required to ensure they are adequately covered with their own insurance company. Volunteers carrying out events are only covered by our insurance if a simple risk assessment has been completed.

What happens if I can no longer volunteer?

We’re aware that sometimes circumstances prevent you from volunteering. Where possible, please provide as much notice as you can, if you are no longer able to volunteer. In all instances, please inform you staff contact or if unsure, please contact us on 0300 111 5555 or volunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.org.

How will I give feedback about my volunteering experience?

We welcome feedback at any stage of the volunteer journey to continually improve how we work with volunteers. Your staff contact will be a useful point of contact for sharing positive, developmental or other feedback about your role. For more general feedback, please contact us on 0300 111 5555 or volunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.org.

What measures are in place to keep me safe?

Alzheimer’s Research UK aims to ensure volunteers are fully aware of their responsibility for safety and of the safety considerations relevant to the role. Volunteers will be provided with information relevant to their welfare and that of other volunteers and the public when volunteering.

I am an asylum seeker, refugee or without British citizenship. Can I still volunteer?

Yes, you are welcome to volunteer. Please make sure that volunteering does not conflict with any other appointments or events that might require your attendance. For further information please visit Citizen Advice (www.citizensadvice.org.uk) or the Government website (www.gov.uk).

My contact details have changed since I applied or started volunteering, what should I do?

Please let your staff contact know any relevant changes to your contact details as soon as possible, and they will update our records accordingly. If in doubt, please contact us on 0300 111 5555 or volunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.org.

I will require additional support – can I still volunteer?

Please contact us prior to applying to discuss any issues that might prevent you from volunteering. We will do our best to accommodate reasonable adjustments to the volunteering role where possible. However, it is unlikely that we will be able to provide tailored support on an individual basis (e.g. transportation, interpreters, chaperones etc). Alzheimer’s Research UK is committed to volunteering opportunities that are accessible so please do discuss with us what additional support you might need.

All role applications provide the opportunity to detail any heath or accessibility issue that might affect your ability to carry out the role. By submitting the form, you are declaring that you feel fit and able to complete the activities outlined in the role description. We will review the details you have provided on the form and contact you if we have any concerns about your ability to volunteer in the chosen

My company would like to get involved in this event – what should they do?

If you are looking to volunteer as part of a larger group, team or company-led initiative then please do contact us on 0300 111 5555 or volunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.org

I’ve still got questions. What do I do now?

We’d love to hear from you by contacting us on 0300 111 5555 or volunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.orgvolunteer@alzheimersresearchuk.org