Volunteer as a Sense Virtual Buddy

Child and mother hold homemade ice creams t

What is Virtual Buddying?

Sense matches volunteers with disabled people to meet for an hour a week on Zoom or over the phone. 

Our volunteers have spent thousands of hours with their buddies — learning new skills, having fun, and forming fantastic friendships.

Sense matches each volunteer with someone who has similar interests, to make sure you have a great time. 

Fill in the form below to get started!

I just know that on a Thursday I’m going to be laughing at the end of my day. It’s a really positive part of my week.

Bethany, who volunteers with Olivia

Volunteer as a Buddy

Just fill in this form and we’ll send you more information about next steps.

Virtual buddying volunteer enquiry form

Name

How does it work?

  1. Fill in the form above and we’ll send you an application form to ask for some basic information.
  2. We’ll set up a quick chat to learn more about your interests so we can find the right match, answer any questions, and explain the project.
  3. While we’re matching you, we’ll send you a short online training package so you’re prepared to get started.

If you’re volunteering with an under-18, we’ll also request a DBS check (don’t worry, we’ll help you get this and we’ll pay for it, too). 

And that’s it — time for your first session with your buddy!

What can you do with your buddy? 

What can’t you do! You and your buddy choose a time that suits you, and you can decide what activities you’d like to do.

If you’d like to pick up some new skills, you can request materials from Sense. Want to learn Tai Chi with your buddy? How to dance, paint, or play an instrument? Sense can send resources to help! 

If you have any questions, we’re here to help. Sense is full of supportive, friendly people who are dedicated to making sure you succeed, learn, and have fun on this project.

I felt very supported from the very beginning. Even now (4 months in) I know I can talk to you about anything and get some more support from you.

Amy, volunteer Buddy

Who can volunteer?

A Sense Buddy is playing a guitar, and his Buddy is holding his strumming hand. They're indoors, sitting across a couch and coffee table.

The programme is open to all volunteers who are 16 and over.

You don’t need to have previous experience volunteering or caring for disabled people. We welcome people from all backgrounds and with all interests.

We’re also always looking for people who speak British Sign Language – if that sounds like you, get in touch with us.

Cooking and baking brought Trisha-Mae and I closer together. Those moments in between pre-heating the oven and eating a slice of cake were some of the happiest I had during the pandemic. All thanks to my buddy, Trisha-Mae.

Rebecca, volunteer Buddy
Buddies meet up at Sense's Thrive festival - they're standing outside with a very colourful hand painted background behind them.

Face-to-face Buddying

We are also looking for volunteers to meet young people face to face, for weekend activities based in east London, west London and Manchester.

We ask volunteers to commit to three hours a week, for a minimum of six months. We offer full training before you start.

You could go swimming, bowling, visiting museums and parks, or just going to the cafe. Whatever activities you choose, you will make a big difference in their life.

We provide a budget for travel and activity expenses and also offer a range of additional training opportunities. 

Find out more about Sense Buddying in London and Manchester.

Any questions?

If you have any questions about virtual buddying with Sense, feel free to get in touch