Listening Volunteers

Would you like the chance to make a real difference to someone’s future? Every 10 seconds someone contacts the Samaritans and every 10 seconds we can help someone turn their life around.

Samaritans of Farnborough & District have been supporting our local community since 1978, working towards a world where fewer people die by suicide. We offer a safe place to talk if people are feeling emotionally distressed or are having a difficult time and need to talk things through in a confidential and safe environment. No judgment and no advice, just a conversation about how they are feeling. We are here for anyone who needs someone, especially in a time of crisis. People don’t have to be suicidal to call Samaritans, they can get in touch about anything that’s troubling them, no matter how large or small the issue feels.

Volunteering at Samaritans of Farnborough & District is an incredibly rewarding experience. We have a team of over 100 volunteers, both listening and support. With an age range of early 20s to over 90, and volunteers from all walks of life, we’re a really varied group. Our listening volunteers are the ones who, as the name suggests, listen to our callers, whether that’s on the phone, over email or face-to-face. 

What's it like being a Listening Volunteer?

  • It’s always different and always interesting – no two conversations are the same.
  • It feels like a privilege to have people confiding in you.
  • You’re never on your own, and there’s a fun, supportive atmosphere in our branches.
  • You can offer support on the phone or email.
  • You can take a break between conversations whenever you need to
  • Spending a few hours helping other people can make you feel good about yourself.

Main Tasks

  • Listening to callers on the phone
  • Support people via email
  • Supporting people face-to-face when the branch is open


  • Each shifts last for three hours, and span a range of times from first thing in the morning to the middle of the night.
  • We ask for one shift a week, but there’s plenty of flexibility- you get to choose which days and times you volunteer. This means you can find the time that best suits you, whether you’re an early bird or a night owl.
  • No two shifts are the same, and you’ll listen to a huge variety of different people in different situations. By supporting our callers, you’ll make a real difference to somebody’s life.
  • You’ll always have company during your shift, so there is lots of support for you and a chance for a catch up. There are also plenty of biscuits to keep you going! 


What skills are useful to be a Listening Volunteer? Samaritan volunteers come from all walks of life. They are people who:

  • are good listeners
  • question gently, tactfully - without intruding
  • encourage people to tell their own story in their own time and space
  • refrain from offering advice and instead offer confidential emotional support
  • always try to see the other point of view, regardless of their own religious or political views.

We are looking for people who are:-

  • Open-minded
  • Empathetic
  • Accepting
  • Supportive
  • Discreet
  • Honest

Training, Mentoring and Support

The training you’ll receive at Farnborough & District Samaritans is thorough and will prepare you for your time here. We have a friendly, supportive training team who really take the time to address your needs so you get the best possible experience. The training doesn’t stop once you have your first shift. You’ll have an encouraging mentor by your side and ongoing training throughout your time with us. We also organise talks from community members, such as the police, to help develop your understanding of local issues. The best thing? The skills you learn are transferable to all aspects of life, so you might find you become a better listener at work and home too. You’ll never be on your own as a listening volunteer. And there’s always time to talk through anything.

More about Us

Farnborough & District Samaritans is filled with friendly faces, and you’re guaranteed a smile when you walk into the branch. There’s always somebody to chat to and, if you need a little support yourself, someone to give you a helping hand. We encourage a community spirit by hosting special events for volunteers, such as barbeques, tea parties and curry nights. If you’re looking for new friends, this is the perfect place to make them.


  • Age restrictions
  • DBS check required
  • Equal Opportunities Policy
  • Expenses reimbursed
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Ongoing support
  • Recruitment Process
    Application form, interview, references, trial period
  • Training provided
  • Volunteer induction
  • Volunteer Policy
  • Volunteers covered by insurance
  • Written role description

When can I volunteer?

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

Availability Details

One 3-hour shift per week, flexible hours and days available. A commitment of at least a year is required.


182a Farnborough Road
GU14 7JL

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