FAQs for volunteers
Below are some of the frequently asked questions about volunteering with us and our answers.
I don’t know the history of Fulham Palace, and I don’t have any experience in the heritage sector, can I still volunteer?
We’ve a variety of roles across the Palace, and most don’t need previous knowledge or experience. We provide relevant training for all our volunteer roles, and we look for people who will enjoy the role and have time to embrace volunteering at the Palace.
Can I volunteer at the Palace if I am under 18 years old?
I receive welfare benefits, can I still volunteer?
If you are on benefits you can volunteer for as many hours as you like, as long as you receive no payment other than the reimbursement of reasonable expenses and keep to any other restrictions related to your benefit(s). You should always inform Jobcentre Plus when starting to volunteer, especially if you are receiving unemployment support. More guidance is available on the GOV.UK website.
I’m registered disabled and/or have additional support needs, can I still volunteer?
We’ve made every effort to ensure our volunteer opportunities are as accessible as possible, and we make all reasonable adjustments to allow someone to volunteer. There is a section on the enquiry form to list support needs, and the details provided help us tailor support where feasible. Many roles also provide volunteer buddying during the introduction period to ease the settling in process.
Can I be flexible about what day and how regularly I volunteer at the Palace?
We do look for volunteers who are able to commit to at least one session a month. While some roles involve volunteering weekly, others are based upon flexible sessions that volunteers can sign up to online through our volunteer portal. All our roles require an amount of training. For volunteers to get the most from the experience, we look for people who can commit to around six months. There are exceptions to this so please do still contact us with any further questions.
I am looking for a school work experience placement can I do this at the Palace?
We’ve a limited capacity for work experience placements. For this reason, we only accept one ten day Key Stage 4 placement.
Do you security check new volunteers?
We ask all volunteers to provide two references in order to volunteer. Some roles involving volunteering with children require a Disclosure and Barring Service check (DBS). Roles that require these checks will state this clearly on the role description. We’re only concerned about convictions that are relevant to the role. Any information revealed by these checks is kept strictly confidential.
As a volunteer can I claim back travel expenses?
We don’t want you to be out of pocket from volunteering at the Palace. We reimburse travel expenses up to a maximum of £8 per session. All receipts must be kept to make a claim and the expenses process is fully explained at the volunteer induction.
What support do volunteers get?
All volunteers will receive relevant training required for their role, including a volunteer induction with the volunteer development officer. Volunteers each have a named staff supervisor who is their regular point of contact while volunteering. We’ve regular opportunities to be involved and feedback through start of season meetings, volunteer forums and regular departmental coffee mornings.
What are the benefits of volunteering?
We pride ourselves on offering volunteers a positive and engaging culture, including regular social events, forums and our volunteer portal, a dedicated website for our volunteers. Through the portal, volunteers can contribute blog posts, sign up to sessions and access all the information they need as a volunteer. Our opportunities offer volunteers the chance to be part of a team, meet new people, develop skills and experience.
Will I receive a reference for my volunteering?
We’re happy to supply references for volunteers. For us to provide a thorough reference we advise that you volunteer with us regularly for at least six months.