Volunteering can be a rewarding way to help in your local community at the same time as meeting new friends, developing skills and exploring hobbies. There are many different volunteering opportunities available depending on the time you are able to give: whether you have an hour or so each week or can give much more.

Introduction to Volunteering

Our volunteers are spread right across the county and help us provide a unique combination of complementary skills and expertise to reach and support an ever increasing number of blind and partially sighted people.

We have a number volunteering roles to suit your skills, experience and background. If you only have a few hours to spare, we’ll have something to suit you and the impact of your time is immense. We are also keen to offer roles for people who would like to take up key roles in the governance and administration of the charity.

All our volunteers are police checked and referenced and all receive Visual Awareness and Sighted Guiding Training at the outset of their volunteering. They are also very aware of the need for confidentiality when dealing with sensitive and personal information and understand the need to act in a safe and thoughtful manner.

Current Opportunities

We have an exciting range of volunteering roles, so there’s bound to be something to suit your interests and skills. We provide support, guidance and training to help you to get the most out of volunteering for us.

You can make a huge contribution to the work we do by joining our wonderful team of volunteers.

Sight Loss Advisers – Splatford Barton, Exeter
At our Centre in Splatford our Sight Loss Advisors are complimented by a team of highly dedicated volunteers. Our Volunteers at Splatford Barton are the first point of contact for visitors to our main office or people making telephone enquiries. They demonstrate some of the equipment that is available and signpost to other agencies.

Community Support Volunteers
Would you like to help a person with sight loss live a fuller and happier life?

If the answer is Yes then undertaking this role for Devon in Sight may be just what you are looking for.

Talk and Support Group Helper
The aim of this role is to support people attending out Talk and Support Groups by making them feel welcome, helping with introductions, familiarisation of the building where they take place (toilets etc.), and helping with the provision of light refreshments.

You will be helping people to participate in a group that is focussed on the needs of people living with sight loss.

Community Enabler
The aim of the Community Enabler role is to support people affected by sight loss by helping them gain confidence and to reconnect with their community.  We will place the person at the centre of what we do and help them by offering positive encouragement, practical help and emotional support, for up to a period of 6 weeks, depending on individual need.

In this role you will be providing one to one support enabling people living with sight loss to continue with their hobbies and interests as agreed and discussed during the assessment process carried out by the Community Support Worker.

You will be helping people to continue to participate in leisure and social activities, hobbies and interests.

Skills for Seeing Trainers
Devon in Sight works in partnership with the Macular Society to offer training in ‘Skills for Seeing’ which can help people with central vision loss make the best use of their remaining vision.

Skills for Seeing Trainers can help people learn about:

  • How Lighting can help people with sight loss
  • How to use Magnification properly
  • Eccentric Viewing to help people recognising faces and reading
  • Steady Eye Technique to improve reading speed

You can make a real difference to people's lives by helping them learn these techniques, which can be used to make living with macular disease more manageable.

Volunteer Club Engagement Officer
We are looking for someone to help us with building links with ‘Blind and Partially Sighted Clubs’ across the county. You will promote our services, provide information and advice and help us to fundraise.

Volunteer Fundraisers
We are looking for people to join a team of Community Fundraising Volunteers helping us to raise the funds we need to support blind and partially sighted people.

Trustees
Trustees help to ensure that organisations are being managed properly. They are responsible for the strategic development of the organisation, not the day-to-day operation. Whilst trustees are required to take on legal responsibilities under charity and company law, they are still volunteers and need to be recognised as such.

We are currently looking at our Board skill gaps and planning for succession. If you would like to speak further please contact us.

Common questions about volunteering

How do I apply?
Take a look through the volunteer roles available. When you have found a role you’d like to apply for, complete our application form and send it to enquiries@devoninsight.org.uk and one of our friendly team will be in touch.

If you would like the application form in a different format (such as standard print, large print, braille or audio) or if you have any questions about a role, contact the Volunteering Team by emailing enquiries@devoninsight.org.uk or telephone on 01392 878 800

How much time would I have to give?
Your volunteering time depends on you and which volunteer role you undertake for us. Some people volunteer every day, others volunteer for just a few hours per week and some decide to volunteer for one-off events and activities.

We try to match your availability as far as we can and any time that you can give, no matter how small, is always very much appreciated.

What support and training will I get?
Volunteers are given support from their manager and colleagues. Our training includes an induction, Understanding Sight Loss pack as well as any role specific training that you may need.

Volunteering roles can involve a wide range of tasks and activities. Such as Resource Centre Advisors, administration, campaigning, and fundraising. We also have special events available throughout the year which usually involve something a little bit different!

What skills do I need?
Some roles may need special or technical skills and knowledge, others may require good personal skills and abilities such as empathy and concern for the welfare of others.

In many cases however, the skills you will need can be developed while volunteering, with help from a supervisor or manager and other volunteers and staff.

I am visually impaired, can I volunteer?
You can certainly volunteer with Devon in Sight. We encourage applications from people with sight loss and other disabilities.

If you would like the volunteer application form in a format such as large print, braille or audio or if you have any questions about a role, contact the Volunteering Team by email at enquiries@devoninsight.org.uk or telephone on 01392 878800.

I am under 18, can I volunteer?
Yes, you can, although a few of our roles do have age restrictions. Information about specific requirements can be found in each volunteering role description or you can contact us for more information by email volunteering@devoninsight.org.uk or telephone on 01392 878800

Will I be paid expenses?
You will be entitled to reimbursement of all reasonable expenses so that you are not left out of pocket. We will ask you to produce receipts and travel tickets and complete a simple claim form.

Can I volunteer while claiming benefits?
Yes, volunteering does not affect your benefits and there are no limits to the amount of time you can volunteer as long as you continue to meet the conditions of the benefit you receive.

Get more information from the .gov.uk website about volunteering and benefits.

Who can be my referees?
Two people you have known for at least two years and aged 18 or over who can provide character references. They must not be a family member/partner/boyfriend/girlfriend nor live in the same household as you.

Applying is very simple! Fill in our application form and send it to enquiries@devoninsight.org.uk

Contact the Volunteering Team
If you would like the application form in a different format (such as standard print, large print, braille or audio) or you have any questions about volunteering, please do contact us.

Email: enquiries@devoninsight.org.uk
Telephone: 01392 878800