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Ecotherapy Buddy Volunteer

Forest Farm Peace Garden (FFPG)

We run ecotherapy garden sessions to support people with mental health recovery needs such as depression, anxiety and isolation. Our buddy volunteers help to create a friendly and welcoming environment, enabling everyone to participate fully. 

Main tasks and responsibilities

  • To assist volunteers with support needs and help them with tasks in the garden.
  • To create a safe, friendly and welcoming environment for all.
  • To help with setting up sessions and clearing up after.
  • To assist with workshops and other special events on site.
  • Optional opportunities to lead/co-lead workshops or activities, depending on interests and skills.
  • To participate in evaluation and garden consultations to share ideas and give feedback.

Benefits to volunteer.

  • Becoming a buddy is an opportunity to gain skills and hands-on experience in support work and social and therapeutic gardening. 

What skills do I need?

Skills, attributes, experience and qualifications

  • Ideally some gardening experience, although this is not a requirement as our staff supervise gardening sessions.
  • It would be desirable to have some experience of working with adults with mental health support needs and/or community volunteering experience.
  • Good communication and group skills, including group decision-making.
  • Good ability to follow instructions and supervise a group activity.
  • An interest in and enthusiasm for ecotherapy, organic gardening, wildlife activities and outdoor activities.
  • An understanding of and ability to keep professional boundaries and to share any safeguarding concerns with a member of staff. This will be covered in more detail in the training.
  • Need to be 18+

When do I need to be available?

Morning Afternoon Evening

Approximately once or twice a month on a Wednesday or Friday 10:30am to 1pm and/or 1:45pm to 4pm.

Where does this role take place?

Hazelbrouck Gardens

View on Google Maps →

Register your interest

We limit the number of roles you can initially express an interest in to 3 opportunities. Please only register an interest in 3 roles maximum.

  • Ideal for people interested in
  • Animals and Wildlife
  • Community Development
  • Environment
  • Health and Social Care
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing
  • Ideal for people who like
  • Befriending
  • DIY/Construction/Odd Jobs
  • Events
  • Gardening
  • Application Process
  • Application Form
  • DBS Check
  • References
  • Support provided
  • Access to group meetings/socials/team events
  • Basic reference can be provided
  • Induction provided
  • Training provided
  • Volunteer Handbook available
  • Volunteer will have named supervisor
  • Written role description
  • Accessibility
  • Accessible parking available
  • Accessible toilet facilities
  • Expenses reimbursed
  • Travel/mileage
  • Organisation Policies
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Safeguarding policy
  • Data Protection Policy
  • Equal Opportunities Policy
  • Volunteer Policy
  • Other Information
  • Accessibility - additional information
    This is a garden site with grass and woodchip pathways so accessibility for wheelchair users is currently limited although we are working on improving the pathways. Please contact us if you require further information on accessibility.
  • Are there any age limits?
    Minimum age 18 and no maximum age limits.
  • DBS checks - additional information
    All buddy volunteers that complete our training are required to undertake an enhanced DBS check arranged by the organisation.
  • Recruitment Process - additional information
    You will need to complete the short application form on our website and attend the training days. Dates advertised on our website.
  • Reference can be provided after how long volunteering?
    Up to five years
  • Role is exempt from Ex offenders Act 1972
    DBS required and subject to the organisation's DBS policy.
  • Support Provided - additional information
    Group check-ins and reviews and access to staff member for advice and support. Two staff available during garden sessions to run the group activities. Guidance and help with gardening and other activities is given during the sessions by staff.
  • Thanks / Recognition for Volunteer contribution
    End of year celebrations, training, outings, events, free educational workshops.
  • Transport Info (nearest station / bus stop)
    Hainault tube station (Central line) or local buses from Ilford, Barkingside, Romford etc
  • Volunteers covered by insurance
    Public Liability insurance covers all volunteering activities

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