Volunteer at Emerson - Change your Life!
Our volunteer programme has been running for the past six years with volunteers coming to spend their time working in either the house, garden or kitchen teams; our volunteers play an intrinsic part in the successful day-to-day operation of the College. Whilst the day of a volunteer can sometimes be long and tiring, our volunteers are always full of cheer and play a valuable role in creating an atmosphere that is positive and uplifting.
Volunteers range in age from early twenties to their late fifties and come from across Europe.
Very often volunteers report that their time at Emerson has been ‘life-changing’. Saskia, from the Netherlands says “For the first time in my life I worked in a team and loved it. It was a great experience physically (body), socially (soul) and spiritually (mind)”.
Oscar, from Spain reports "You work at Emerson College as a volunteer and understand that for some reason you've come for the treasure that is in you ... and to improve your English!"
Photo: Volunteers in Spring and Summer 2016
To volunteer you must be 18 or over and have a basic knowledge in English (intermediate level for Office). The work is quite hard and you need to be well and fit.
Ideally, we like a volunteer to stay between 6 and 9 months as this allows us and you to bring rhythm to the work with your colleagues. Please, still feel free to enquire if you would like to come for 3 – 6 months only. Due to the strict immigration laws in England we can only accept applicants with a European passport.
Spring Volunteer opportunity
We have one place for a volunteer who would like to help Trude, our Vegetable grower, in the garden and on the Estate.
- Work in the Vegetable growing area: cultivating, weeding, sowing, composting, propagation, harvesting, cutting hedges, green house growing.
- You will have the opportunity to learn some basic in biodynamic organic growing practices. The vegetables from the garden will directly go to the College Kitchen.
- Work on the Estate: regular tasks in maintaining shrubbery, borders, lawns, woodlands, orchards. Learn about nature; plants, flowers, ornamental shrubs, trees, insects and animals and their relationships in a unique eco-system.
We will provide all tools and work gloves.
Dates: 17 April to 17 September 2017
Summer Volunteer opportunity
We have 2 programs in summer for those interested to help with house keeping and in the kitchen. Dates: 3 July to 6 August and 9 August to 11 September 2017.
Kitchen Team Tasks
- Assisting the college cooks in the preparation of meals: breakfast, lunch and supper. You will learn about vegetarian cooking and how to create tasty meals.
- Cleaning the kitchen and kitchen storage areas
- Stocking supplies in the appropriate college spaces
- House Team
- Preparing guest accommodation including cleaning, making beds and general house keeping
- Working in the college laundry
- Setting up class rooms and other college teaching spaces
- Setting, serving and clearing college meals and refreshment breaks, washing up
- General house work in and around Pixton House
- Restocking house supplies
- Learning about ecological cleaning methods and creating harmonious spaces
Kitchen and house teams will be provided with suitable work attire [aprons, kitchen clothing etc]. Closed shoes (no sandals) are required to work in.
On occasion we may ask you to work in another team for a day or two, depending on need, but for the sake of continuity it is generally expected that you will work in one team only.
Work on the Estate
- Regular tasks in maintaining shrubbery, borders, lawns, woodlands, orchards.
- Learn about nature; plants, flowers, ornamental shrubs, trees, insects and animals and their relationships in a unique eco-system.
We will provide all tools and work gloves.
Office Team (full-time with 30 hours / week or 50%)
- Receive students and guests in the Reception
- Support the events manager in the day to day running of the Reception and the book shop
- Support the Director of Operations in fundraising activities and general office work
- For volunteers to join the Office team we require an intermediate level of English.
Please understand that volunteering at Emerson is hard work as there is much to do. We expect that when you are on shift, you are on time and ready to do a full day’s work. We ask for a commitment of 30 working hours in every 7 day period. The shift patterns will vary depending on what team you are in, but there will be days off and free time for everyone in each 7 day period.
In return for your commitment we will look after you. We provide you with all meals, your own room and use of college facilities. The working language is English and you will be able to practise your English every day. Often the volunteers are invited to participate in festivals, storytelling evenings and lectures or bring in their own initiatives. Many of our volunteers have stayed on in England either to find work, join a course or start a professional training.
We are not able to pay your travel or any form of wages, so you will need to bring some pocket money with you.
On arrival you will be shown around the college and you will have ample opportunity to get acquainted with your colleagues, the staff and the work you will be doing. We will train you in your work and make you familiar on how to work safely.
Our Contact Details
The college reception phone number is +44 (0)1342 822238.