Volunteer as an independent visitor

An independent visitor is an adult who meets with a child or young person who is in care, or who has recently left care, to do a fun activity together. This helps the young person to do what they enjoy and provides them with a positive adult role model. The consistent friendship helps the young person to build self-esteem, confidence and resilience.

We are looking for fun, reliable and enthusiastic volunteers from all different cultures, backgrounds and experiences who have a genuine interest in making a difference to the lives of Sheffield's children and young people.

What an independent visitor does

You'll meet with your young person once a month for a minimum of 2 years. Our young people are aged between 6 to 25 years old. You can say if you want to volunteer with a particular age group.

You will decide with your young person what to do, but activities could include going to the cinema, bowling, playing football, going to a restaurant, riding a bike or walking in a park.  We will aim to match you with a child you share common interests with.

As an independent visitor your responsibilities are:

  • meet once a month with the young person you are matched with
  • accompany the young person during their hobbies and interests
  • offer and provide emotional and practical support to the young person where appropriate
  • complete brief logs of each visit and maintain expense records
  • commit to the role for a minimum of 2 years

You will have an assigned independent visitor co-ordinator to support you.

Experience and the recruitment process

It's helpful if you have some knowledge and practical experience of involvement with children and young people but no formal qualifications are needed and full training is given.

As part of the recruitment process you will need to:

  • complete an application form
  • complete an enhanced DBS check
  • provide two references
  • undergo a short interview
  • attend 2 training days

Activity and travel expenses are covered and support is provided throughout by your independent visitor co-ordinator.

How to become a volunteer

If you're interested in becoming an independent visitor we'd like to hear from you. To find out more about the role and how to apply email iv@sheffield.gov.uk or call us on 0114 228 8522.

Contact Independent Visitor Co-ordinator Service

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