Volunteer with KEEN London

If you enjoy activities and games, have some spare time at the weekend and would like to help children with additional needs, KEEN London could be the rewarding volunteering opportunity for you!

During a KEEN London session, you’ll provide tailored support to an athlete, helping them to access all the activities on offer, achieve their personal development goals, and of course have tons of fun! You’ll get a chance to learn new skills, make friends, and watch our athletes progress. No experience is necessary – just lots of energy, enthusiasm and a willingness to learn!

No previous experience of working with children or disabilities is required, just enthusiasm and energy! We invite all our new volunteers to attend an induction, which will introduce you to the charity and your role as a volunteer coach, teach you some of the basics of supporting children with additional needs, and give you a chance to meet other new coaches.

We ask coaches to commit to attending at least 2 sessions a month for a minimum of 6 months, but there is no maximum limit — you can come as many times as you like! After your first five sessions, you’ll receive a snazzy KEEN London t-shirt, and we award badges for frequent attendees. Regular coaches receive additional training opportunities, invites to our exciting volunteer socials, and the chance to progress to becoming a volunteer team captain.

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Where and when

KEEN meets:

  • Saturdays in Dalston, East London, from 10:00-14:00
  • Saturdays in Vauxhall, South London, from 10:00-14:00

Please note that our North London sessions are not currently running. If you would like to volunteer in North London, please sign up to East or South London for now and we’ll contact you if our North London sessions resume.

For child protection reasons, we ask all our volunteers to complete a DBS check – this is something we’ll process for you. We also ask that you abide by our volunteer agreement and child protection policy.

Becoming a KEEN London volunteer

Becoming a KEEN London coach is straightforward and we can guarantee a rewarding and fun volunteering experience. You can read the full volunteer coach role description here.

KEEN London Coaches must be 18 or over. If you are aged 16 or 17 and would like to volunteer please contact us directly via volunteering@keenlondon.org.

You do not need any specialist skills or experience, but will need lots of enthusiasm and energy, as well as good communication and team-working abilities. Getting started is very simple:

  1. Fill out our online application form
  2. We will get in touch to let you know if your application has been successful
  3. We will contact your referee
  4. Once we’ve heard back from them, we’ll invite you to attend an induction session

KEEN London is the only charity in London providing one-to-one support at free sports and activity sessions for children with additional needs.

See our athletes at regular sessions, on days out and on residential trips away from home in the KEEN gallery.

If you would like to support our work, there are many ways you can help us raise the funds we need.

Volunteers say…

I’ve been volunteering for almost two years now. I started doing it because I wanted to use some of my spare time to help people in my local community. I think London can feel so big and impersonal and it’s easy to become self-involved — I wanted to avoid that and do something to make life easier for the people around me.

I’ve never worked with children professionally and my career is not at all child-oriented, so it was all very much outside of my comfort zone when I started. I have learned so much from the kids and become a more rounded person myself, so it’s been a great experience.

Olivia, KEEN volunteer

I think what keeps me coming back is knowing that you really are making a difference to the children’s lives even in just a small way, you can see week to week how they start to interact with each other more and become more confident with getting involved with the games because everyone is there as a group encouraging. All the athletes are really lovely too. Plus it’s good fun playing all the games anyway, it doesnt feel like volunteering your time!

Laura, KEEN volunteer

A very enthusiastic friend who volunteers with KEEN got me involved; and now there’s no going back. On Sundays I get to play games I haven’t played since my childhood and if it’s possible I think I enjoy them even more now! The athletes are great and what’s more, I’ve met some great people who I hope become friends for life.

Kelly, KEEN volunteer

I got involved with KEEN through the Vodafone world of difference programme and really enjoy the Sunday morning sessions. I find it a rewarding and exciting experience to interact with the enthusiastic and energetic kids while allowing their parents/carers a couple of hours respite. I have also really enjoyed getting to know the other volunteers who, just like me, are still kids at heart.

Alex, KEEN volunteer

KEEN London is great place where you can meet superb people and have loads of fun.

Edyta, KEEN volunteer

KEEN is a fun, friendly and active way to let off steam, both for athletes and coaches. What makes it so successful is the enthusiasm and the familiarity as coaches and athletes develop friendships that grow.

Charlotte, KEEN volunteer

Volunteering for KEEN is a wonderful way to spend your free time. It’s a pleasure to get to know and develop the athletes and the sessions and trips are lot of fun. 

It’s well-organised and the coordinators provide lots of training and support. You only need to commit to volunteering once a month but most coaches attend a lot more than that, as it’s so enjoyable and rewarding. Would definitely recommend to any Londoners looking for volunteering opportunities!

Rachel, KEEN volunteer

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You can keep up with sessions and each other on the KEEN London facebook group!

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