Defining Volunteer Centres (VCs) 

What is a Volunteer Centre?

Volunteer Centres (VCs) are the ‘go to’ places for volunteering locally. In London, they are borough-based and usually work with local people and organisations. In most, but not all boroughs, the Volunteer Centre is a part of the local CVS but retains a separate focus for volunteering.  

What does a VC do? 

London VC Network: Connects, promotes, supports, represents


  • Offers a brokerage service, i.e., matching volunteers to local organisations.

  • Offers additional specific services, e.g., supporting volunteers with disabilities, corporate volunteering or, as seen recently in the vaccine rollout, mass volunteering.


  • Provides information and advice for volunteers and prospective volunteers, but also volunteer-involving organisations.

  • Supports the local voluntary and community response to emergencies.


  • Raises the profile of volunteering locally, increasing awareness amongst the general public, and, significantly, policymakers and funders.

  • Provides strategic leadership on issues related to volunteering.


  • Represents and advocates significantly for volunteers and volunteer-involving organisations.

  • Provides local insights and amplifies the voice of communities, volunteers, but also, volunteer-involving organisations.

  • Each borough’s Centre will have a service unique to that organisation, in response to local partnerships and residents.  

London VC Network 

London Plus facilitates the pan-London VC Network, chaired by Karen Chillman (Croydon Voluntary Action) and Dominic Pinkney (Volunteer Centres Camden and Hammersmith & Fulham). The network meets quarterly. This provides a forum for collaboration, peer support and the sharing of insights.


Councils for Voluntary Services Page


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