Volunteering in Care Homes

Sharing time and talents and building caring communities

Volunteering in Care Homes was a national three year pilot project, funded by the Department of Health. It provided opportunities for care homes and their local communities to work together to:

  • enhance quality of life
  • build cohesive communities
  • enable active citizenship.

Tamim and residentThe project has produced a final evaluation report (PDF, 300KB) and a suite of resources to support care home owners, managers and staff in the development of volunteering opportunities within their homes.

Volunteers were recruited and supported through their local Volunteer Centre to share their time and skills with older care home residents in befriending relationships or through supported activities, either individually or in groups, around common interests such as knitting or playing board games.

The project, guided by a Strategic Advisory Group, operated in pilot sites that included:

  • central London
  • Oldham
  • Blackburn and Darwen
  • Shropshire
  • South Derbyshire.

The project was evaluated by the Institute for Volunteering Research to capture the impact of the volunteer support on residents’ quality of life outcomes and to identify the volunteer management good practice required to underpin successful volunteer recruitment and retention in a care home setting.

The project development was further informed by sharing and consulting on the project development and evaluation findings at biannual Learn and Share events that engaged regional stakeholders around the pilot sites


Volunteer induction training

– non-editable file, opens straight to slide show

The impact of Volunteering in Care Homes



Blog posts

Guidance on volunteer management in care homes.

Case studies

Pilot sites

CCG areaVolunteer CentreCare Homes
NHS Central London CCG Westminster Volunteer Centre Carlton Dene Elderly Resource Centre St George's Nursing Home Westmead Elderly Resource Centre
NHS Oldham CCG Oldham Volunteer Centre Park House Stoneswood Longwood Lodge
NHS Blackburn and Darwen CCG Blackburn and Darwen CVS Moorland View Care Home Old Gates Nursing and Residential Care Home Townfield and Coach House Residential Care Home
NHS Shropshire CCG Shropshire Rural Community Council Lady Forester Nursing Home Uplands at Oxon Nursing Home Crowmoor House Residential Home Bowbrook House Residential Care Home
NHS South Derbyshire CCG South Derbyshire CVS Overseal Residential Care Home Shardlow Manor Oakland Village Residential Care Home

Strategic Advisory Group

  • Residents and Relatives Association
  • National Care Association
  • National Care Forum
  • Royal Voluntary Service
  • Skills for Care
  • My Home Life
  • Volunteering Matters
  • National Activity Providers Association (NAPA)
  • Alzheimer's Society
  • Manyhappyreturns
  • Care England
  • Peter Clyne (Volunteer)
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