Caring for People in Harrow & Brent

Working with young volunteers – a guide for Parents

At St Luke’s we believe that young people can make all the difference to their communities and their lives through the power of volunteering.

Volunteering enables them to make a positive difference, it not only boosts their confidence and expands their social circle it also enhances their life skills and future employment prospects.

We work alongside young people taking park the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, National Citizen Programme and Stanmore College.

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award 

The four main sections of the DofE programme are Physical, Skills, Volunteering, and Expedition. The participants that volunteer for St Luke’s are normally taking part in the Bronze and Silver schemes.  The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award programmes take between one and four years to complete, and they must be completed by the participant’s twenty-fifth birthday. There are around 300,000 participants annually. The programmes are at three progressive levels which, if successfully completed, lead to a Bronze, Silver, or Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.

Students volunteer for on average 1 hour per week, Bronze activities are weekly and last for 3 months, Silver are weekly and last for 6 months, Sliver can do more hours.  Students need to be aged 14 to take part.  

NCS – National Citizen Programme

NCS is a programme open to 15-17-year olds nationally across the UK. It provides the opportunity for young people to overcome their fears, make new friends and gain new skills. NCS is open to all 16 and 17-year-olds in England. It helps you build your skills for work and life, while you take on new challenges and meet new friends. It runs in the spring, summer and autumn. You’ll have a short time away from home and take part in a team project that will help your community. NCS students usually volunteer on weekly work placements.

Due to COVID-19 the Autumn Programme was postponed but we hope to start working with them again in the New Year.

Stanmore College

St Luke’s have been working alongside Stanmore College offering work placements in our shops to their GCSE students.  The partnership has allowed the students to experience the work place for the first time, meet new people and learn new skills.  We feel working alongside our local college is mutually beneficial to both parties as we are giving the students a chance to experience the work place,  to take responsibility for example with their time keeping and in turn we receive some much needed help in our shops and we are giving something back to the local community.  

Safeguarding our Young Volunteers

The safety of our volunteers is of paramount importance to us and none more so than our young volunteers.  Please see guidance for young volunteers that we issue to all our shop managers.  

All our managers and assistant managers are DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service) cleared.  We are not able to DBS check all our volunteers but it is Hospice policy that no young volunteer is left alone in a non-visible area with an adult volunteer.   There will always be a shop manager on site during the time the young person is volunteering. 

Shop Managers are the ‘go to person’ should a young volunteer have any concerns about another volunteer or customer or their general experience of volunteering.  

The Shop Manager exercises due care and control in the allocation of any tasks and if the young person requests to leave the premises for a short time, the Shop Manager will agree a time of return and escalate if they do not return in that time.  The also check in with the young person at the beginning and ending of their session of volunteering. 

If you have any questions regarding our child volunteering with us please do not hesitate to contact Helen Fenton on 020 8382 8057 alternatively email

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