Spotlight on: Simon – Volunteering with Running!

December 22, 2016

This blog was written by Simon, a guardian currently living in Eltham and doing lots of running related volunteering.

Spotlight on: Simon

I am approaching my first year as a property guardian with Dot Dot Dot, and I have really enjoyed being able to enhance my volunteering work for running events and local groups. These events have included major city races (Virgin London Marathon, Vitality North London Half), local running club events (Mornington Chasers Regents Park series) and fantastic community initiatives like Parkrun.






Parkrun is a free weekly 5km event, organised entirely by volunteers and open to runners of all abilities and walks of life. Over 1000 parkrun events have been set up in parks across the world, and 61 of these are based in London, starting at 9am every Saturday, rain or shine. Volunteer roles include race directing, time keeping, course marshaling, run photography and barcode scanning (for recording positions and times).






The most exciting recent development in my volunteering experience has been my involvement with the Gladstone Parkrun guide running team, in Willesden Green. This event has three regular attendees who are either blind or partially sighted, and the volunteers have established a core team of guides to assist these runners around the undulating two-lap course. Parkruns are a great place to experience guide running for the first time (for the runner and the guide), as these events are rarely held near roads and will use a consistent, easily navigated route every week- perfect for building up your confidence, and to set both guide and runner a regular challenge and opportunity to improve their run.

If you are interested in learning how to be a guide runner, feel free to contact the Parkrun UK website. Experienced guide runners can be added to the UK Athletics Guide running database, and can be requested to attend training and race events.

So thanks to Simon! If you’re interested in becoming a Dot Dot Dot guardians like him, saving money on rent and volunteering locally, apply now.

Spotlight on Federico

June 14, 2016

Federico became a guardian with Dot Dot Dot in August 2015 and since then has volunteered for a variety of environmental and educational charities. This is his experience: 

Spotlight-Logo_CMYK_0I started being a guardian over a year and a half ago with a different organisation, but I was interested in Dot Dot Dot because they are more community minded. I always like to feel that I’m part of something bigger and having this opportunity to not only secure a property but to engage in activities with the community that help to improve the local area was particularly attractive. I have found this fulfilling and have enjoyed helping people living in the community.

When I first started volunteering around Poplar, there were many interesting projects to be a part of, and I didn’t know where to start or which one to choose. I decided to get involved with many of them and tried out different opportunities, from helping with gardening to constructing an organic waste device in a recycling project in a park.

In the end, with the help of the team at Dot Dot Dot I was put in contact with the managers of Poplar HARCA Spotlight, a youth centre where children from 11 to 18 years old can go to participate in creative activities including art, theatre, games, music, radio, sports, dancing and more. As I am a musician and recently finished my audio production degree, I wanted to share my knowledge collaborating in something related to audio or music. After introducing myself to the team working in Spotlight, I have been helping to teach music in their studio. I regularly teach children to play a variety of instruments, write songs, produce their music and rehearse. We have also created several events, where the local community can listen to what has been created.

spotlight capture website 3I’ve been very happy with both my guardianship property and my volunteering, and I’m looking forward to seeing how this progresses.

Get involved

  • If you’re interested in volunteering and becoming a guardian with Dot Dot Dot, apply here today
  • Keep up to date with our news and our guardians’ volunteering experiences on Facebook and Twitter

Top 5 London Volunteering Opportunities

October 3, 2014

Top 5 London (2)
Keep fit with GoodGym Newham
Where: Meet at the London Aquatics Centre
When: Every Wednesday at 6.45pm
A brand new branch of GoodGym has started in Newham. GoodGym is a community of runners that run on missions together to help the community, through clearing community gardens or painting a wall at a community centre. Ditch the expensive gym membership, register on their website and start doing good for both your body and your community. Follow the Newham group on @GGNewham.


Help raise money for Breast Cancer Care
Where: Liverpool Street Station, EC2M 7QH
When: 24th October
Breast Cancer Care are looking for volunteers for a bucket collection at London Liverpool Street Rail Station on Friday the 24th of October for Breast Cancer Awareness month. They need 6 volunteers for each shift:

7:30am – 9:30am
4:30pm – 7:00pm

They have the permit all day so if another time suits you feel free to contact them and let them know. There are no requirements for this role except enthusiasm, a willing arm to hold your bucket and a desire to help raise the vital funds necessary to deliver the fantastic services that Breast Cancer Care provides. Apply via the Team London website.

Music Production Support Volunteer at Spotlight

Where: Spotlight, 30 Hay Currie Street, Langdon park, London E14 6GN
When: Ongoing, Monday and/or Thursday evenings
Spotlight are seeking volunteers to support their Technician with the overall running of music based sessions at Spotlight; this may include setting up spaces, using recording equipment, any sound rigging for events and teaching young people about music production

Some training will be given however they do require volunteers to have basic experience and knowledge of Logic Pro. If you have experince of Protools, Cubase, Reason or Nuendo please submit an applictaion as your skills are likely to be transferrable to Logic Pro.

To express interest and find out more about the role, please email Terri Calbraith on

Musician (piano/keyboard) volunteer with Mildmay

Where: Spencer House, Austin Street, Shoreditch E2 7NB
When: Ongoing
Are you interested in making use of your music talent to uplift, inspire and build confidence in others?

Mildmay offers a range of rehabilitative services to people with HIV associated neuro-cognitive impairment. Their new Thursday group is aimed at bringing out the creativity and expression of music through song and hymns. The group will initially be lead by their SALT therapist but will be given over to the volunteer to lead (after full training). The group will consist of 5-7 people.

To learn more and get involved please email Nicholas on

Become a Silver Line Friend

Where: Home based
When: Ongoing
Silver Line Friends are volunteers who enjoy offering friendship to older people. Silver Line friends offer a befriending service to older people, calling an older person once a week to check they are ok and have a chat.

Calls are managed through a ‘virtual call centre’ and so can be made from home or from an office space. Volunteers work in pairs for safe-guarding and support. Calls made by Silver Line Friends are paid for by the charity.

For a full role description visit the website.

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