Independent Visitor

What does the Independent Visiting (IV) Service do:  

Barnardo's understands that children and young people who are in care or who have recently left care may have no, or very little, contact with their families and for some the contact may not always be positive. Independent Visitors (IVs) provide a long-term supportive relationship to children and young people living in foster or residential care who have asked their social worker to arrange for an IV to help them. Local authorities have a duty to provide an IV in these cases. IVs can be the most consistent person in the lives of some children and young people in care and bring tremendous benefits to them.  IVs are volunteers who befriend young people, get to know them, advise them and support them during their time in care and sometimes through the process of leaving care. This is a long-term volunteering role requiring a regular commitment each month to spend time and build a relationship with a young person.

Key activities: 

Fortnightly or monthly outings or activities at mutually convenient times - a walk, a sporting activity, shopping, a meal, a museum, homework, community activities, whatever the young person wants to do and provides an opportunity for meaningful interaction.

Training, support or other benefits available:

Barnardo's provides all volunteers with training relevant to their role, including training in Safeguarding, Professional Boundaries, Equality & Diversity, Confidentiality, and Health & Safety. This volunteering role can provide volunteers with opportunities to gain experience in supporting young people, working with a national charity, interacting professionally with staff, families and carers.

Support will be provided through on-going supervision with the IV Co-ordinator.


Attitude/skills/knowledge required:

Volunteers need no formal qualifications, just a genuine and active interest in the welfare of children and young people and good listening and communication skills.  Barnardo's also asks that all volunteers show:

Commitment to Barnardo's Basis and Values, Commitment to Barnardo's Equality and Diversity Policy

IV matches can last for a number of years, and therefore the role can be a long-term and require significant on-going commitment. Volunteers must be willing to travel to meet the young people that they are supporting who are largely living in the Portsmouth area for a few hours about once a month. Meetings can take place at the weekend or in the early evening, depending on the availability of the Independent Visitor and the needs of the young person.


  • Accessibility
  • DBS check required
  • Equal Opportunities Policy
  • Expenses reimbursed
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Training provided
  • Volunteer induction
  • Volunteer Policy
  • Volunteers covered by insurance
  • Written role description

When can I volunteer?

Start Date: 31/08/2017

End Date: 31/08/2020

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
Morning No No No No No Yes Yes
Afternoon No No No No No Yes Yes
Evening Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Availability Details

Flexible times but usually about once every four weeks, usually at weekends or in the evening. The service is based in Portsmouth but can also include children placed in Southampton and the North of the New Forest including Totton and Hythe. Volunteers would need to be happy to travel to some of the above locations as part of the role.


This opportunity is available Countywide.

Similar Opportunities

Before you can register your interest in this opportunity you must either login or register as a volunteer.

You will be returned to this page.



Register as a Volunteer
Website Feedback Please complete our short survey