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Help us inspire a nation of storytellers.

Our volunteers are amazing people, doing incredibly valuable work. We’re forever grateful to them all.

Writing mentor with student (photo: Tom Oldham)

 

Volunteer roles

Could you help us inspire thousands of children? Show them that writing is fun? Could you sell Cubed Earwax and jars of Olde Fashioned Brain Jam?

You can help us in three main ways:

  • As a writing mentor, supporting and encouraging young writers as part of our school programmes and after-school writing clubs
  • As a shopkeeper or online order clerk, helping run Hoxton Street Monster Supplies. It’s London’s oldest supplier of goods for the Living, Dead and Undead
  • By giving skills ‘in kind’ to help with special projects

All sorts of people volunteer at the Ministry of Stories – teachers, parents, writers, artists, students, zombies, people looking for work experience… all right, not zombies. They’re all just as captivated by the magic of the Ministry as the children are.

“Watching the growth of students during their sessions… Wow. Breathtaking. It reminded me that if you set a young person a challenge, they’ll often rise to it.”
Funmi, writing mentor 

What does it involve?

  • We need volunteers to complete a one-day induction – we hold these on the last Friday of the month
  • We ask volunteers to complete a minimum of six shifts in the first six months
  • Shift lengths vary according to the role – writing mentor shifts are typically 2-3 hours long and shop shifts are typically 4 hours long
  • Most of our shifts run during the week, in the day-time – we only have very limited shifts available on a Saturday
  • We run clubs and workshops with children aged 8-18 years old – most of these take place at the Ministry but some take place in local schools
  • As a writing mentor you’ll be working supportively with children, encouraging them to develop their own creative ideas
  • As a shopkeeper you’ll be serving customers and engaging them in the work of the Ministry

“Every time I come to volunteer I feel like I’m part of something. It’s an incredible feeling… Plus, it’s just fun!”
Adrienne, writing mentor and shopkeeper

Benefits for volunteers

If you volunteer, you will:

  • gain experience of working with children
  • meet new people
  • explore new skills for developing children’s writing (mentors)
  • develop reflective working practices
  • get a DBS check and safeguarding training
  • have the opportunity for further skills and leadership development
  • build confidence and people skills
  • work as part of a supportive team
  • be part of a community
  • get a reference
  • gain unique retail experience (shopkeepers)

It’s also loads of fun. Did we mention the tea and biscuits, and our regular thank you events? Those too.

“It has really helped build my skills… Not only do you get some retail experience, you also get to learn new things and meet new people.”
Andre, shopkeeper

Who are our volunteers?

Meet some of our mentors and shopkeepers, featured on the blog.

Inspired?

For days filled with cheer, stories and monsters, magic moustaches and Zombie Fresh Mints volunteer today. We need you, and we know some children who do too.

At the Ministry of Stories we value diverse, inclusive environments, and we are happy to discuss any access needs you have, and any reasonable adjustments we can make to make volunteering for us possible.

“It helps me to feel confident when adults help.”
Bruce, age 10, writing club member