Volunteer for the helpline

Join our team of dedicated telephone volunteers and help change the lives of bereaved people.

79,000 people call our National Helpline every year. For many callers this will be the first time they have asked for help with their grief. Our volunteers are there to listen, provide emotional support and talk through the options available to them.

When I started working on the National Helpline, one of the first challenges was being able to adapt quickly to each person’s grief and their story. I always want that to be a warm and welcoming experience where they feel truly listened to and that they are not alone in the grief.


Helpline volunteer

mary griffin helpline volunteer

Am I suited?

You don’t need to have previous experience to become a bereavement volunteer. We look for people who are good listeners, resilient and are empathetic and supportive.

Essential qualities:

  • Empathetic and warm
  • Proactive approach to self-care
  • Open to receiving feedback
  • Self-reflective approach to learning and development
  • Punctual and reliable
  • Comfortable talking about death and grief

We’re committed to protecting the wellbeing of our volunteers. That’s why if you’ve recently had an important bereavement, we kindly ask you to wait two years before volunteering with us.



Comprehensive training programme:

  • All volunteers are required to attend 6 training sessions over a course of 2 months.


  • National Service Coordinators
  • Monthly group supervision
  • CPD training programme
  • Volunteer get-together programme

Time commitment

Our volunteers commit to 4 shifts per month on phone or email service.

  • Monday – Friday: 9.30am-3pm
  • Saturday-Sunday: Closed

Email Service Opening Hours:

  • Monday & Friday: 9:30am-5pm
  • Tuesday – Thursday 9:30am-8:00pm
  • Saturdays 10am – 2pm


Frequently Asked Questions 

We hold open days throughout the year for those who are interested. Dates will be added to this page when they become available. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram as we let people know there when dates are set.

We run our Open Days throughout the year. If you can’t make one, simply follow us on Facebook. That’s where we advertise upcoming dates.

Our Open Days sell out very quickly. If you try to book a place and the event is sold out we allow around 15 places on the waiting list in case someone else cancels.

Our insurance does not cover those who are permanently based outside the UK. If you’re spending time abroad temporarily it may be possible to continue to volunteer remotely, each case will need to be assessed individually.