Ways to volunteer during Covid-19

18 March 2020

Volunteer Scotland is working closely with the third and public sector to support a joined-up response to coronavirus (COVID-19). Here's some advice on how you can volunteer.

Updated: 11/01/21 The latest Scottish Government guidance came into effect on 5 January 2021 with 'Stay at home' regulations in place in most local authority areas. Please review the Coronavirus local protection levels in your area before volunteering.


What does this mean for volunteering?

Even with protection levels in place, services which are essential are still being provided in communities. There has been a resumption of some additional volunteering, permitted under the measures outlined above. Volunteers are encouraged to look out for their neighbours. Please ensure you heed all relevant advice around staying safe and keeping others around you safe. Check out the guidance from Ready Scotland.  


Before considering volunteering ask yourself – am I well enough to volunteer?

It’s critically important that you consider your safety and that of others at this time. NHS inform provides guidance on when to self-isolate and how to reduce the chances of contracting and spreading the virus, at home and in other places.

If you are well enough and wish to volunteer with an organisation in your community, please check out the following options:

Local and national level support

  • You can contact and register with your local Volunteer Centre. They should be able to direct you to which opportunities are needed most in your local area at this time. 
  • There are a number of 'coronavirus' related opportunities available here and here

Finally, you can still volunteer from your home. See our information on online volunteering for details. 

The Scotland Cares Campaign



We expect volunteering to change during coronavirus with some volunteering opportunities unable to be conducted whilst other roles increase in demand. There is also a groundswell of informal volunteering support and neighbourliness at this time. 

It’s important to note that not all volunteers who contact services will be assigned to a role immediately. 

If you're helping a friend, family or neighbour try to minimise the time that you're out of the house. 

Do not assume that someone needs help or call directly to someone’s house unannounced, as some people may be very anxious, particularly if they have a medical condition or are living alone.

Someone may ask for something you can’t do? In this case you should let the person know that you cannot help and recommend that the local Volunteer Centre may be able to help in finding a solution.