Volunteering for Code Club
What is it like to volunteer for Code Club? Our volunteers give you the inside scoop!
Your role as a volunteer
Code Club leads a community of volunteers who share their passion for digital making with children and teachers across the UK.
We create resources aimed at children aged 9 - 11 for volunteers to use in weekly Code Clubs in their local area.
To volunteer at a Code Club you need to:
- be available for one hour a week to help with a Code Club session in a local school, library or community venue
- commit to volunteering for at least one school term (12 weeks)
- have time to prepare for the Code Club session each week. This may include organising resources and completing the project you will be doing with the children in advance
- organise a DBS check for yourself
- be happy to collaborate with the club host at the venue to make the club run smoothly. The club host will accompany you in the sessions too.
- be confident with computers. You don’t have to be a coding genius, most clubs start with simple programs like Scratch, but you need to be willing to learn
- be ready to communicate the joy of digital making to a group of around 10 - 15 children each week
Read more about the role of a Code Club volunteer.
Please note: unfortunately we cannot cover expenses for our volunteers. You are not allowed to charge for your club. Code Club is always free for children to attend.
Want to see a real Code Club in action before you start? Then visit one of our Star Clubs.
Know what you're signing up for
Volunteering for Code Club will be the best thing you do this year. Guaranteed. But there are some things you should know before you sign up.
• Each Code Club lasts for 1 hour and happens once a week.
• You will need a DBS statement (used to be called CRB check) and a supervisor from the venue must be at each Code Club you run.
• As part of the sign up process, you'll need to complete some volunteer training, so we know you have all the info you need.
• You will need to print and staple a copy of project instructions for each child or pair of children. You will need preparation time to do this. Unfortunately we can’t cover expenses.
• Please allow for travel time too.
• You will not be allowed to charge for your club.
What we teach
The Code Club projects are step by step guides for children to follow to create animations, games, websites and much more. Children will build up their programming skills as they move through the projects, and challenges provide opportunities to demonstrate and apply what’s been learnt.
There are enough Code Club Scratch projects to take you through 12 weeks with your Code Club. If your club are ready to move on from Scratch, we also have projects for Python and HTML & CSS.
You can find the projects, as well as skills maps and guides on how to set up Scratch, and how to get started with Python or HTML on our projects site.
How to set up a Code Club
We've tried to make volunteering for Code Club as easy and quick as possible, but if you have any questions you can talk to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
First things first, you’ll need to sign up via our website.
If you want to volunteer at a local community venue, choose the volunteer option. If you are a teacher and you would like to run a club at your own school, choose the club host option and then let us know you will be running the club yourself.
You will need a DBS statement (used to be called CRB check), which the club host will check when you meet them to plan the club.
If you live in Scotland you'll need to apply for the PVG Scheme via Disclosure Scotland. For Northern Ireland, please see AccessNI.
You'll need to complete some volunteer training, so we know you have all the info you need. You can do this online or in one of the face to face training sessions that we run all across the UK.
You can then use our website to search for a venue that is looking for a volunteer. You can search by postcode and contact the club host at the venue through our site.
Meet the club host: you’ll need to agree what time and day to run the club. Most clubs run weekly and happen after school or at lunchtime, but there are also Saturday and evening clubs. Clubs normally have 10 - 15 children, but that is flexible too.
Once you have found a venue and agreed with the club host that you will volunteer there, you both need to confirm on our website and you’re off!
You will then have access to your Club ID and PIN, so you can access all our resources.
Lots of Code Club volunteers have blogged about their experiences running a Code Club. Have a read so you know what's coming.
It is compulsory for anyone regularly working with children under the age of 18 to have an Enhanced DBS check and you'll need to make sure that you show yours to the Club Host before you start the club.
We recommend that interested volunteers based in England, Wales and Scotland sign up for the STEM Ambassadors Programme.
STEM Ambassadors is a volunteering programme for STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) professionals and those with a personal interest in STEM subjects. STEM Ambassadors receive a free enhanced DBS check, are insured by STEMNET, and also benefit from being linked into a local network of schools and volunteers.
To sign up as a STEM Ambassador, you will need to complete the registration form and attend a two-hour induction session on working effectively and safely with young people. The ID check for your DBS check will take place at the induction, and the rest of the application is done online. Disclosures are normally issued within 4 – 6 weeks.
Please note that membership of the STEM Ambassadors Programme is not mandatory for those wishing to get involved in Code Club. However, we think it’s a great way to make sure you’re fully supported in your volunteering. You can also process your DBS check via GB Group (for which there is a small admin fee of £17.40). Full details of how to follow this route are available when you register.
Please note that for Scotland and Northern Ireland, the rules are slightly different. If you live in Scotland you'll need to apply for the PVG Scheme via Disclosure Scotland. For Northern Ireland, you can contact your local Volunteer Centre or see AccessNI for more information.
Code Club does not provide checks. It is your responsibility and the responsibility of the Club Host to make sure all the legal checks and insurance are in place BEFORE you begin your club
Got more questions?
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