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volunteering as a route to paid employment

Services to connect people to employment opportunities

If you have been out of paid employment for a while it can feel like a challenge to get back to work.  It can feel even more difficult if you have experienced ill health or you think you’re still some way from being “work ready”.  Volunteering will help build your confidence, skills and can improve your chances of finding paid employment.

Part of your journey to paid employment

How can volunteering help you get paid employment?  By volunteering you can get relevant experience and build a range of soft and hard skills which will help you.  You may want to improve your team working, problem solving or communication skills.  You may want to learn new practical skills like operating a till, designing a website or working with children.  Perhaps you want to improve or update your IT skills, customer service skills or feel more confident when using the phone or speaking to new people.  By doing voluntary work you also get material for your CV and it gives you experiences that you can talk about at interviews.  It can help you get into the routine of work.

Volunteering can help you:

  • give you a chance to try out different types of work;
  • learn new skills;
  • update existing skills and experience;
  • boost confidence;
  • get content for your CV;
  • help you learn new skills; and
  • gain a reference to take to employers.

Importantly you don’t need to worry if you are currently on benefits.  You can still volunteer and the Department of Work and Pensions are fully supportive of volunteering as part of your journey to paid work.  You can read more about volunteering and claiming benefits by downloading the guide in the downloads box opposite (or below on a mobile device).

If you want to find out how this service can offer specialist help and advice to find the right volunteering opportunity for you please contact the team by calling 0131 561 8322 or email

Employability drop-in

Not sure if this service is right for you? Why not attend our Employability Drop-in?

At these regular drop-in sessions you will have an opportunity to meet with one of our Voluntary Work Coaches and we can also help with: creating and updating your CV; applications forms; searching for employment and volunteering opportunities; and contacting organisations.

Our Employability Drop-ins are held every Monday 2.00pm – 4.00pm and you do not need to make an appointment.