Volunteer with us

Citizens Advice Central Dorset has four main offices, with associated outreaches, in Dorchester, Gillingham, Sherborne and Weymouth & Portland.

We value volunteers from a wide range of backgrounds and experience and we depend on volunteers to deliver our service; without their commitment and enthusiasm we would not be here.

Why volunteer?

  • Work as part of a friendly and supportive team
  • Make a real difference to those in our local community who seek some help
  • Learn new skills and refresh others as part of our supportive and ongoing training

Insight into the Role of Volunteers

Our latest video gives an insight into the service we provide and the experience of our volunteers and how important their support is for our Clients.

Current Opportunities

We currently have opportunities across our offices for the roles of Volunteer Advisers, Volunteer Debt Administrators and Volunteer Receptionists/ Administrators.

To find out more about each of these roles please select from the options below.

Volunteer Advisers

What will you do?

  • complete an introduction to Citizens Advice and participate in an in depth 6 month training on topics such as Benefits, Housing, Consumer Issues, Employment and Debt
  • complete relevant training on the National Citizens Advice training platform, Skillbook
  • ensure you are compliant with GDPR standards and maintain confidentiality
  • talk to clients over the phone, face to face, or online to explore what problems they’ve come for help with
  • find information about the clients’ problems and help them to understand their options
  • support clients to take action to resolve their problems. This might include drafting or writing letters, making phone calls, or referring the client to another organisation
  • write a summary of the clients’ problems and what action you’ve taken
  • help us with our Research and Campaigns by looking out for problems’ that are common, or are unfair, and write a short report about the problem or a letter to an elected official like an MP, AM or local councillor
  • write up cases on our internet based recording system Casebook

Some examples of what you could do:

  • explore what benefits a client is entitled to and help them to complete a benefit application form.
  • help a client who has problems with their landlord to understand their housing rights.

What’s in it for you?

  • make a real difference to people’s lives
  • learn about a range of issues such as benefits, debt, employment and housing.
  • build on valuable skills such as communication, listening and problem solving, and increase your employability
  • work with a range of different people, independently and in a team.
  • have a positive impact in your community.

And we’ll reimburse travel expenses too.

If you’re training to be a solicitor and you train and volunteer as a local Citizens Advice adviser, you may be able to get up to six months off your solicitor training contract. See Solicitors Regulation Authority for more information.

We can take on Law Student placements too.

What do you need to have?

You don’t need specific qualifications or skills but you’ll need to:

  • have good IT skills including knowing your way around websites and using email
  • be friendly and approachable
  • be non-judgmental and respect views, values and cultures that are different to your own
  • have good listening skills
  • have excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • have good maths and literacy skills
  • be able to understand information and explain it to others
  • be willing to learn about and follow the Citizens Advice aims, principles and policies, including confidentiality and data protection
  • be willing to undertake and commit to the training in your role

How much time do you need to give?

It is expected that training will usually take place once a week for approximately 4 to 5  hours and that could be either training online or training with other advisers face to face. The week will consist of learning on various topics with your Training Supervisor for 2 to 3 hours plus a further 1 to 2 hours completing your courses in your own time per week.  Then ideally we ask for 6 to 8 hours per week, which can be over one day or spread over two days, for at least a 12 month commitment, once qualified.

We can be flexible so come and talk to us.

Valuing inclusion

Our volunteers come from a range of backgrounds and we particularly welcome applications from disabled people, people with physical or mental health conditions, LGBT+ and non-binary people, and people from Black Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities.

If you are interested in becoming an adviser and would like to discuss flexibility around location, time, ‘what you will do’ and how we can support you please contact your local office (contact details are given below). 

Volunteer Debt Administrators

What will you do?

  • complete an introduction to Citizens Advice, training for your specific role and understand the Debt process
  • talk to clients over the phone, face to face, or online and obtain necessary paperwork to further their case
  • find information about the clients’ problems and liaise with their Caseworker
  • support the Caseworker with correspondence, which could include scanning documents, emailing letters or phoning to request further details
  • assist the Caseworker in closing the case and other routine tasks as directed by the Caseworker
  • use our online case recording system to record outcomes

What’s in it for you?

  • make a real difference to people’s lives
  • learn about a range of issues such as benefits, debt, employment and housing.
  • build on valuable skills such as communication, listening and problem solving, and increase your employability
  • work with a range of different people, independently and in a team.
  • have a positive impact in your community.

And we’ll reimburse travel expenses too.

If you’re training to be a solicitor and you train and volunteer as a local Citizens Advice adviser, you may be able to get up to six months off your solicitor training contract. See Solicitors Regulation Authority for more information.

What do you need to have?

 You don’t need specific qualifications or skills but you’ll need to:

  • have good IT skills including knowing your way around websites and using email
  • have good maths and literacy skills
  • be friendly and approachable
  • be non-judgmental and respect views, values and cultures that are different to your own
  • have good listening skills
  • have excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • be able to understand information and explain it to others
  • be willing to learn about and follow the Citizens Advice aims, principles and policies, including confidentiality and data protection
  • be willing to undertake training in your role

How much time do you need to give?

Ideally we ask for 6 hours per week, which can be over one day or spread over two days, for at least a 12 month commitment.

We can be flexible so come and talk to us.

Valuing inclusion

Our volunteers come from a range of backgrounds and we particularly welcome applications from disabled people, people with physical or mental health conditions, LGBT+ and non-binary people, and people from Black Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities.

If you are interested in becoming a Debt Administrator and would like to discuss flexibility around location, time, ‘what you will do’ and how we can support you please contact your local office (contact details are given below). 

Volunteer Receptionist / Administrator

What will you do?

  • complete an introduction to Citizens Advice and training for your role
  • help with the day to day running of the Citizens Advice service
  • answer the telephone, reply to emails and post
  • print and scan documents using a printer
  • update spreadsheets and databases

What’s in it for you?

  • gain and build on valuable skills and experience such as communication, admin, IT skills and working in a team
  • increase your employability
  • contribute to the smooth running of the advice service which makes a real difference to people’s’ lives
  • work with a range of different people, independently and in a team.

And we’ll reimburse travel expenses too.

What do you need to have?

You don’t need specific qualifications or skills but you’ll need to:

  • be friendly and approachable
  • be confidential
  • respect views, values and cultures that are different to your own
  • have good IT skills
  • be willing to learn about and follow the Citizens Advice aims, principles and policies, including confidentiality and data protection
  • be willing to undertake training in your role

How much time do you need to give?

We usually ask for about 4 hours a week, but we can be flexible about the time spent and how often you volunteer so come and talk to us.

Valuing inclusion

Our volunteers come from a range of backgrounds and we particularly welcome applications from disabled people, people with physical or mental health conditions, LGBT+ and non-binary people, and people from Black Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities.

If you are interested in becoming a receptionist/ administrator volunteer and would like to discuss flexibility around location, time, ‘what you will do’ and how we can support you please contact your local office (contact details are given below). 

If you are interested in any of these roles and would like to have an informal chat about volunteering at your local office or outreach, please select the office from the list below for ways to get in touch.

For an informal chat about volunteering at the Dorchester office, please please contact us by sending us a message using our Contact Form.

For an informal chat about volunteering at the North Dorset (Gillingham) office, please contact us by sending us a message using our Contact Form.

For an informal chat about volunteering at the Sherborne office, please contact us by sending us a message using our Contact Form.

For an informal chat about volunteering at the Weymouth & Portland office, please contact us by sending us a message using our Contact Form.