Volunteer with us!
Our Volunteers are at the heart of the Coroner’s Court.
Are you a caring, compassionate and sensitive person? Would you like to help support families and witnesses who may be experiencing a wide range of emotions and feelings when attending a Coroner’s Court? You can make a difference by helping to support families around the UK when they need someone to talk to, and to explain the processes and procedures to them, during a sensitive and difficult time.
We welcome every volunteer and value the work they do for us, from all walks of life.
Please get in touch with us if you are interested in a very rewarding position.
We are currently recruiting to the following areas:
Cannock, Burton on Trent & Stafford
Stoke on Trent
What do our volunteers think?
Marguerite – Carlisle Volunteer
Rosie – Leicester Volunteer
Tom Fredrickson – Manchester Volunteer
Sylvia Wearden – Blackpool Volunteer
Liz Steadman – Truro Volunteer
Angela – Newcastle Volunteer
Helen Armitage – Ampthill Volunteer
Our Equal Opportunity & Diversity Policy
The Coroners’ Courts Support Service is an equal opportunities organisation.
Our policy is to ensure that no witness or family member attending an Inquest, employee, volunteer, Trustee, Management Committee member or job applicant receives less favourable treatment on the grounds of race, colour, religion, ethnic or national origin, age, sex, marital status, sexual preference or disability, or is disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be justifiable.
Selection criteria and procedures are regularly reviewed to ensure that individuals are selected and treated on the basis of their relevant merits and abilities. Employees and volunteers will be given equal opportunity and, where appropriate, special training to enable them to progress within the organisation.
What do we look for in a Volunteer?
We look for volunteers who have:
- The ability to work alone, but also as part of a managed team;
- The ability to work reliably within a rota system;
- Willingness to be contacted and to make contact with the Coordinator and the Lead Volunteer
- Commitment to undertake initial induction and training;
- Willingness to work within the framework of the CCSS:
- Adherence to the policy of confidentiality;
- Ability to listen and communicate with a wide range of people;
- A caring, mature and supportive attitude;
- Willingness and ability to sit for extended periods of time. This role may not be suited to those less mobile.
- Ability to communicate in English, both orally and in writing;
- Willingness to work with and in conjunction with the Coroner and the Coroner’s Officers.
Volunteer Role Description
Title: Coroners’ Courts Support Service Volunteer
Reports to: The Coordinator
Purpose: To enable families, witnesses and their associates to cope with the experience of attending Court and giving evidence by providing confidential support and information in accordance with the CCSS policy and guidelines and the principals of Equal Opportunities.
- To help the Coroner’s Officers in any way appropriate within the role of this volunteer description in order to support family members and witnesses.
- To undertake pre-Inquest familiarisation of the Court and explain the procedure.
- Refer to the Coroner’s Officer any questions that fall beyond the remit of the CCSS. Volunteers will not give any legal advice.
- Listen to and empathise with concerns and anxieties of the families and witnesses.
- Do not undertake counselling.
- Accompany the families and witnesses into Court unless they specifically ask you not to.
- After the Inquest, allow them time for recovery in a quiet place, if available, and ensure they have received all necessary information from the Coroner’s Officer.
- Signpost family members and witnesses to other appropriate agencies if they so wish.
- If the Inquest is not concluded that day, pass on all information to the volunteer taking over the case via telephone only.
- Complete the CCSS Report Form and the statistics sheet. These to be held in the CCSS file at the Coroner’s Court or other appropriate agreed safe place.
- To be available a minimum of one day a fortnight if required. To attend the Court from 45 minutes before the Court sits to the end of the day’s session.
- Never discuss evidence, give an opinion on the possible conclusion or comment on the effect of this.
- Must be available for regular support and supervision which can be conducted by telephone, email, group or one-to-one. Must also attend at least four volunteer meetings per year unless specifically agreed with the Line Manager.
- Submit claims for travelling and other agreed expenses in accordance with the Coroners’ Courts Support Service policy. Travel expenses should be via the cheapest form of transport available wherever possible.
PROCEDURE FOR NEW VOLUNTEERS
- Complete the Coroners’ Courts Support Service (CCSS) Application Form.
- Attend and observe a variety and number of Inquests at a Coroner’s Court to see if you would feel comfortable working in the Court environment. At the same time, we will be able to tell you more about volunteering with the CCSS and explain the procedure to you as detailed below.
- If after this discussion you wish to be considered as a volunteer with the CCSS, arrangements will be made for you to watch how our volunteers help.
- A formal interview will be held to determine whether you should become a volunteer.
- If you are accepted to become a volunteer, references will be taken up and Police or Disclosure and Barring Service checks undertaken (please note the applicant must have been resident in the UK for a minimum of 3 years).
- You will attend the CCSS training as soon as this is arranged.
- Meanwhile, you will ‘shadow’ an experienced volunteer several times to learn the procedure.
- After successful completion of the training an experienced volunteer will then ‘shadow’ you until your Coordinator and you are confident in your ability to work on your own.
- Throughout the above processes you will be assessing the CCSS to determine if it is the right type of volunteering role for you and the CCSS will be assessing your suitability as a volunteer.
- You will then start as a volunteer supporting in the Courts