Volunteers play a huge part in what goes on at the Rendezvous – and we’d love to hear from you if you would like to join our team.

Our learning programme depends on our wonderful volunteer tutors, who give one-to-one support to young people to help them gain essential skills and qualifications. We also get lots of help from behind the scenes volunteers, who bring all sorts of skills and experience to our work.

If I hadn’t got my maths qualification then I’d be kicking around Sherborne in a dead-end job watching everyone else go off and do exciting things. Now that won’t happen.

It’s not only young people who benefit from the work of our volunteer team – the volunteers gain from the experience too, as Helen explains in the video above.

I get more from volunteering than I give. It feels good to know I’m having a positive effect on a young person’s life.

Volunteering really can change lives – the young person’s and also the volunteer. You can read about the difference our volunteers make in a feature article from the Sherborne Times.

Would you like to get involved?

Just choose one of the options below – we’d love to hear from you.

Please note that we take the welfare of young people very seriously and all our volunteers must pass vetting checks and safeguarding procedures before starting with us.

What is volunteer tutoring?

Giving your time as a volunteer tutor means giving practical support to a young person who has missed out at school, helping them gain their Level 1 or 2 functional skills English or maths qualifications.

Young people need these qualifications to move on into apprenticeships, employment or further education. They gain hugely in confidence throughout the process and can start thinking about their next steps in life.

We now have a team of more than 30 tutors and have helped more than 100 young people gain their qualifications.

How does it work?

The young person, or learner, is paired with a volunteer tutor and they work together one to one at the learner’s pace. This can be crucial for those who find classrooms make them anxious and unable to learn.

The pair meet weekly, either online or in person, in an unpressured non-judgemental atmosphere. The learner sits their exam when the tutor thinks they are ready,  rather than preparing for a set date.

It’s flexible so learners and tutors can start at any time throughout the year.

What are we looking for?

  • You don’t need a teaching qualification or teaching experience
  • You need competence in English and maths (A level standard)
  • We look for kindness and patience, the ability to explain concepts clearly and calmly and not to judge
  • You need to commit to two to three hours a week, either online or in Sherborne, Yeovil, Gillingham or Shaftesbury.

What support will I get?

  • You will receive free NSPCC safeguarding training
  • You will have an induction to show you the materials and examination papers, and the IT we use
  • You will be given your own Rendezvous email address, access to Microsoft Teams for one-to-one tutoring and to Google Classroom to share resources with other tutors
  • You will be given a mentor – an existing tutor who you can shadow and who can share their experience – and monthly tutor meetings

What safeguarding do we undertake?

All applicants are subject to DBS checks and our application and interview processes follow safer recruitment guidelines.  All volunteers receive free NSPCC safeguarding training and an annual refresher in the spring.

What Covid safety measures are in place?

We follow the National Youth Association’s Covid guidelines and have strict protocols in our centre. As an educational centre, we are allowed to run our learning at our centre, but we also have the option to provide tutoring online.

Do we pay expenses?

We can cover reasonable travel expenses where appropriate.

How do I get involved?

First, please read the detailed volunteer tutor role description. Does this sound right for you? If so, phone Julie Bartle or Faye Dimdore on 07572 918240 or drop them a line using the form below.

    What does behind the scenes volunteering mean?

    If you have admin, practical business skills and experience you think could benefit us then please get in touch.

    Let us know what your skills are and we’ll see how we can use them – we’ve found roles for administrators, software specialists and carpenters, among others.

    Volunteers have provided invaluable support with administration for our learning programme, for example, setting up databases and helping maintain the premises.

    Please get in touch if you think you can help, using the form below.