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Frequently asked questions about volunteering in swimming and aquatics

If you want to learn a bit more about volunteering with Swim England, take a look through some of our Frequently Asked Questions about volunteering in swimming and aquatics (FAQs) below.

If you can’t find the answer you are looking for, please contact us by email at volunteering@swimming.org.

  1. What volunteering opportunities are available?

There are many different roles and opportunities available to suit everyone’s skills and passions be it within a club, committee or at local, regional and national events.

  1. How much time and commitment would volunteering involve?

This depends on the role and the amount of time you can give, but even the smallest of contributions can really make a difference. Some volunteering tasks may require regular hours each week and some only a few each month; some commitments may be ongoing, whereas some roles may be for a specific one-off event.

It is useful to agree some informal terms with your club to manage both yours and the clubs expectations of the time you can, and have agreed, to commit. This will also ensure your time is used effectively. A club may have a Volunteer Coordinator, a link between you, the club and Swim England, who will be able support you in your role.

  1. What skills will I need?

Enthusiasm and a passion to help others are key! As long as you have that, any swimming or aquatic discipline club will more than welcome your support. Some roles might require specific skills and training.

Swim England and the regions offer a number of volunteer training opportunities as well as official qualifications to support and upskill you as a volunteer.

  1. What support is available?

Swim England is here to support all volunteers within the swimming and aquatics community. For information and contact details for all of our volunteer support staff and volunteer coordinator network please head to the Get in touch page. Here you will be able to find your nearest contact who will be able to offer specialised, local support.

As part of our commitment, we provide education and support to all Swim England clubs to make sure they know how to effectively engage and manage all their volunteers.

Your club should provide you with a clear idea of what your role will be and as well as ensure you have access to appropriate training and support. If there’s anything you aren’t clear about, don’t be afraid to ask someone. The most important thing is making sure that you enjoy your volunteering experience!

  1. Is there anything else I need to do when I sign up as a volunteer?

All Swim England club volunteers must be a member of Swim England – Category 3 Membership is our specific category for volunteers.

Your club will be able to support you through the quick process of becoming a member.  If you are an existing member, there is no additional requirement for you to be able to volunteer.

If you will be working regularly with children (anyone aged under 18yrs), you will need to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check through the club, which is a legal requirement and not a reflection of mistrust on behalf of the club.

  1. Can I claim benefits while volunteering?

Yes. The benefits regulations are clear that you can continue to receive benefits while volunteering. You can find all the latest information about volunteering and benefits, including Jobseekers Allowance and Incapacity Benefit from the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO).

  1. I am not a British national. Can I volunteer while in the UK?

Generally there should be no problem accepting someone from outside the UK as a volunteer, but the individual must ensure that immigration rules allow them to do so. Guidelines from the NCVO can be found on the NCVO website .

  1. Can I volunteer if I have a disability?

Of course! It is important to us to ensure that our volunteering opportunities are accessible to everyone. If you have a particular concern, or would like help in finding an opportunity, please contact us by email at volunteering@swimming.org.

  1. Can I volunteer if I am under 16 or over 75 years of age?

Young volunteers under 16yrs will be able to volunteer as long as they are a member of a Swim England affiliated club.

You can find out more information and the specific opportunities and support we offer for young volunteers in the Young Volunteers section here.

Swim England club membership insurance  provides full personal accident cover to members up to 75yrs of age. Members over 75 years old are able to volunteer but have a reduced level of accident cover. Please note this does not affect the public liability of the club or event.

If you would like further details on the insurance cover provided please visit our club insurance portal or email our membership services team renewals@swimming.org.