Buddy Volunteering Programme

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We are looking for new Buddy Volunteers to support our community volunteering days at Sutton Community Farm. Our next training session has been moved from 17th May to 7th June and will take place from 2pm for our regular volunteers and anyone who would like to become a buddy. There will be another training day in July, dates to be confirmed. Fill out this application form if you’re interested and read more below.

The aim of our Buddy Volunteering Programme is to help us maintain a supportive, welcoming and safe space at the farm. As a Buddy, you will play an important role in helping to support fellow volunteers and coordinate tasks. This programme is for volunteers who are interested in supporting volunteers who have mental health problems and/or learning disabilities, or those who may just need a little extra support. Buddies help run practical activities and are available to volunteers who need extra guidance or help with settling in and getting to know the farm.

We are currently experiencing a high volume of referrals but cannot accommodate as many people as we’d like to. Thanks to London Community Foundation/ Comic Relief and City Bridge Trust, we are able to offer this training for free to help enable us to boost numbers of Buddy Volunteers, increasing our ability to help vulnerable people in our community.

How do I become a Buddy Volunteer?

If you have good people skills and you’d like to support people to get involved at our farm, we’d like to hear from you. Prospective Buddies usually begin by attending as regular volunteers, getting to know us and learning how the farm works.

To become a Buddy Volunteer, you need to:

  1. Fill out this application form
  2. Contact us and introduce yourself: Please phone us or contact info@suttoncommunityfarm.org.uk. We recommend coming to visit the farm and volunteering a few times to get to know the farm.
  3. Attend a one-day training session: This includes an overview of our approach and activities, an introduction to social and therapeutic horticulture and health and safety.

What’s the commitment?

We are looking for our Buddy Volunteers to commit to 1-2 volunteering sessions per month. We need Buddies to be able to attend our Community Volunteering sessions on Wednesdays, however, there are sometimes other days when we need support. For example, we sometimes have school groups visiting the farm on a Monday or Tuesday.

Why become a Buddy Volunteer?

This programme helps volunteers improve their communication skills and gain experience working in community farming and social care settings. We have developed a training programme based on the success of another community food project and have received a grant from Team London to support the training of our first set of Buddy Volunteers.

Further information

Click here to download a short information sheet about Buddy Volunteering.

Training dates

Please contact us if you are interested in Buddy Training. Our next training days will be Saturday 22nd April (10-3pm) and Wednesday 17th May (2pm-4pm) at the farm.