COVID-19 Volunteering

This page contains the following sections:

  • News Updates
  • Connect to Volunteering
  • Volunteering Resources
  • Online Volunteer Training
  • Case Studies
  • Useful Websites

This page is updated regularly (latest update 21/04/21)

“News Updates”

Safe Return to Volunteering (April 2021)
Cumbria CVS has produced and updated its best practice guidelines and checklist to support organisations to safely return to volunteering:
Safe Return to Volunteering 04.04.21

Information for Community Leaders (Updated March 2021): Community Leaders Pack March 2021
This pack has been produced by the organisations involved in the Cumbria Community Resilience Group, and other key partner organisations.
Cumbria Community Resilience Group was established as part of the Cumbria LRF coordination structures for the response to Coronavirus.
If you’ve got any feedback on the pack, for example, ideas of information you’d like to see included in future versions, please contact Carolyn Otley, Chair of Cumbria Community Resilience Group:

Wellbeing and mental health during covid-19: a guide to looking after yourself and others
The new the new Covid19 Wellbeing & Mental Health booklet pulled together by Every Life Matters

Connect to Volunteering

Cumbria CVS supports the safe and effective recruitment of volunteers on behalf of charities/third sector organisations across Cumbria to deliver services and/or support individuals. Currently, our attention is focussed on the recruitment and support of COVID-19 volunteers.

Support Cumbria
A central website for anyone interested in volunteering during Covid-19. Click here to register as a volunteer:

Please note: we are anticipating high numbers of volunteers; you will only be contacted when an organisation needs your help but Thank You in advance for  offering your time and skills to volunteer!

Do You Need Volunteers?
If your organisation is looking for volunteers for extra help during Covid 19, please complete and submit the attached Registration Form and return it to Cumbria CVS (

Supporting Informal Volunteers

Communities helping communities
Recently many informal local Facebook groups have been established in response to Covid-19 bringing together informal volunteers who can help and support people already in their neighbourhood. It’s fantastic to see such a fast response from individuals wanting to volunteer and help their neighbours and community!

Cumbria CVS has produced some basic Volunteer Guidelines that you can use to share with your volunteers who may be helping neighbours informally & organised by local neighbours and the community. Please download: Basic Volunteer Guidelines 160720
Some useful national resources and information that has been produced for Informal Groups of Volunteers:

Volunteering Resources

Safe Return to Volunteering
Cumbria CVS has prodiuced a document (including a checklist) to support organisations to safely return to volunteering: Safe Return to Volunteering 04.04.21
Safe return to volunteering checklist (word document): Checklist-safe-return-to-volunteering-14.04.21

Cumbria CVS produced a Top Ten Tips Guide for how organisations can celebrate Volunteers’ Week 2020 virtually during Covid-19 and keeping volunteers and organisations safe. Many of these options can be replicated to say thank you to volunteers at other times throughout the year. See here: Volunteers Week – Celebrating Virtually19052020

Retaining volunteers
A guide to help you keep your volunteers engaged and motivated druing a crisis designed by Cumbria CVS: Retaining volunteers during a crisis

Helping in Your Community
A useful guide – jointly produced by Cumbria County CounCil and Cumbria CVS: Coronavirus in Cumbria – Helping in your local community

Covid-19 Volunteer Handbook
For groups working with informal volunteers. This (word) resource can be downloaded and adapted to suit your organisation (Updated 08.01.21)
COVID-19 Volunteer-Handbook-Guidelines COVID-19-Volunteer-Handbook-Guidelines 080121    Download the Handbook here (pdf) 

Covid-19 Volunteer Risk Assessment
Here is an example of a Volunteer Risk Assessment that allows groups to review and consider the potential risks volunteers may be involved with during Covid-19. Please download this and adapt as required by you organisation/group click here to download

This template was adapted from ACT website for a Community Emergency Planning template. Check out their great resources

Here are 10 Top tips to help you Community (and be a good neighbour) during COVID-19, a resource produced by Cumbria CVS in partnership with ACTion with Communities in Cumbria: please click here to download

Animations: Cumbria CVS has commissioned four short films:

Advice for Volunteer Coordinators
What to consider when you are managing volunteers to ensure everyone gets the best out of the experience:

Tips for Telephone Befriending
Advice if you want to volunteer doing a telephone befriending service:

Introduction to Safeguarding
The basics of safeguarding for beginners working with vulnerable people:

Keeping Safe When Volunteering During COVID-19
The basics of safeguarding for people who may be new to working with vulnerable people:

Online Volunteer Training

Communities Prepared – Public Health Emergencies Training
Training resources to help Community Emergency Volunteers and spontaneous local groups better understand public health emergencies and their potential role in supporting community resilience at this time.

Health Education England e-Learning for Healthcare (HEE e-LfH)
Key materials to help the health and care workforce respond to Coronavirus. This link may be useful to share with your volunteers (formal or informal groups):

British Red Cross Coronavirus Training
This training has been designed by the British Red Cross for anyone who is responding to the coronavirus outbreak. Whether you are a volunteer with a  charity or have decided to lend a hand to a neighbour, it tells you what you need to know to look after yourselves and others. The content of this course will be regularly updated to reflect the latest situation and advice from government.

Recovery College Online – Coping during the Pandemic Course
This course has been developed for everyone in response to the recent global pandemic.
There is information about how to avoid catching/spreading the virus, what immediate feelings you may have and common reactions, managing your mental health at this time, managing isolation and social distancing, self-care, supporting children and young people and some accessible information.
The course is free to access for everyone. You can find the link on our homepage:
We also have a Coronavirus page on the website:

Case Studies

Please find attached some case studies in relation to volunteering and COVID-19:

Useful Websites

For a full list of useful (COVID-19) websites: