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Volunteering

Why volunteer?

Volunteers play a very important part in the work Birmingham Adult Education Service carries out.

By using volunteers in our classrooms we are able to offer a higher level of assistance to any adults who need additional support in reaching their learning goals.

You do not need to be teacher trained, or have a background in disabilities, to be a good volunteer.

What you need to know before becoming a Volunteer

Volunteers assist our learners in a number of settings and situations:

  • This includes a wide range of classes including English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), science, maths and English - for adults who wish to develop their reading, writing, maths and language skills.
  • Accreditation courses at all levels, from beginners to GCSE.
  • Supporting learners with a physical disability, or learning difficulty, within any type of accredited or leisure class on a 1:1 basis or within a group.
  • Computer classes.
  • Language classes at various centres including Brasshouse Language Centre.

Important Information

Suitable applicants will be invited to an informal interview and will need to provide proof of identity from the following documents: current passport/Residence Permit, or a UK birth certificate/Government Agency letter. This paperwork is required to meet UK Government Right to Work legislation. Prior to being offered a position as a volunteer you will also need to provide two satisfactory references.

Please note: We are not able to offer volunteer placements to support the teaching hours requirements of any of the Level 3-5 teacher training courses.

Teaching and Learning in Birmingham Adult Education Service

  • Teaching and learning takes place in groups where learners work on their own individual learning plan, whilst also following the relevant curriculum.
  • Sessions take place morning, afternoon or evening and usually last 2 or 2 ½ hours.
  • Volunteers always work under the guidance of a group tutor, for whom they are a valuable teaching resource. Volunteers are never responsible for the group, or the content of sessions.

What we ask of volunteers

  • To attend an induction and training programme – Level 2 accreditation is optional.
  • To work for a minimum of 2 hours per week, for an academic year.
  • To work within the guidelines of BAES policies and procedures, such as Health & Safety, Equal Opportunities/Diversity, Safeguarding & Prevent Duty.
  • To respect each individual and embrace diversity.
  • To be reliable, positive, patient, understanding and supportive.
  • To be aware that volunteers are not carers.

If supporting any learner enrolled on our ESME programme (ESOL, Science, Maths and English), volunteers' qualifications must meet the national requirements. These are English and Maths at GCSE or O level (grade A-C) or National Test Level 2 or equivalent.

What we offer volunteers

  • The opportunity to:
    - develop new skills and experience the way in which adults learn.
    - meet new people from all walks of life and make a difference to them.
    - explore a possible career change.
  • Training, with an opportunity to gain a qualification
  • On-going support and guidance.

Please note: Our funding does not allow us to cover any personal travel expenses.

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