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Volunteer opportunity description
About the Programme
This summer Team London Ambassadors will once again be based at nine locations welcoming visitors and maintaining London’s reputation as one of the best cities in the world. The Team London Ambassadors programme has grown from strength to strength since its inception during the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. At the Olympics the 7,000 Team London Ambassadors were based at 43 visitor hotspots, travel hubs and tourist attractions.
The Ambassadors were London’s ‘friendly face’, on hand to answer questions from tourists and Londoners alike and helping to show the world the very best that London has to offer. In 2015, over 600 volunteers took part in the programme, with 150 new volunteers joining an existing pool, of which 60 per cent volunteered during 2012. Ambassadors gave 15,000 hours of their time in total, and received fantastic feedback from visitors. In fact, 100% of visitors were more likely to recommend London as a place to visit after interacting with an Ambassador.
The team were deployed at nine key locations over the 41 busiest days of summer. Based around a central information point, a team of three to five Ambassadors and one Location Team Leader interact with members of the public on a range of topics such as the quickest route from A to B, suggestions for things to do in the area and information about wider London offerings e.g. museums, exhibitions etc.
Team London is now looking for 100 new Ambassadors for the 2016 Summer Programme.
The Ambassador Role
Team London Ambassadors are the welcoming face of London, and provide visitors with helpful, accurate and timely information at major tourist hot-spots during the busiest months of the year.
You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated individual with excellent communication skills and a willingness to help members of the public. Ideally you will have a good knowledge of London, and the ability to think quickly on your feet and answer the wide range of queries you'll receive from visitors.
As the face of London, the 2016 European Volunteering Capital, you will be offering friendly and helpful advice to both tourists and locals.
You’ll have the opportunity to brush up on your own knowledge and impart pearls of wisdom about the hidden gems that our great city boasts. Our Ambassadors ensure that every single visitor has the best possible experience in London.
One Ambassador from Summer 2015 said:
“I love my city! I want visitors to see at least some of it through the eyes of the people who live here rather than as tourists. Although the big tourist sites are amazing - there is so much more.”
About the Opportunity
It is likely that Ambassadors will be based at nine locations: Tower of London, Piccadilly Circus, Parliament Square, St James's Park, Trafalgar Square, Exhibition Road (V&A Museum), Southbank and Gatwick Airport (North & South Terminals).
Days are split into two shifts of four hours with one shift in the morning and one shift in the afternoon. Shifts will be in two and three day blocks and our expectation is that all Ambassadors volunteer for at least six shifts in total.
All new Ambassadors will be required to attend a mandatory Foundation Training session in Central London in April 2016 and will receive a Location Training session in June or July 2016.
The summer shifts will begin at the end of July 2016 and will continue until the end of August 2016.
Once you are recruited and part of the wider Team London Ambassador pool, there will then be the opportunity to volunteer in key roles for some of our Major Events including the London Marathon and Ride London.
All volunteers are provided with travel expenses for within zones 1-6 for Central London locations. Ambassadors volunteering at Gatwick Airport are provided with additional travel expenses (up to £25 per day) from outside of zones 1-6 including mileage costs and free parking.
All volunteers are provided with a daily refreshment allowance and new Team London Ambassadors will be provided with a uniform (2 polo shirts and a jacket).
In addition to the experience gained in interacting with the public, all Ambassadors are provided with customer service training, a range of special opportunities from our host venues including free entry and discounts and the opportunity to win prizes along the way.
Frequently Asked Questions
The Role & Training
Will I just be handing out materials?
No. The role isn’t just about handing out maps to visitors; it’s about interacting on a personal level with visitors to help them get the most out of their visit to the capital.
How can I prepare for my shift?
As well as attending the Foundation and Location training, you’ll be expected to do some ‘homework’ and get to know your location. As well as basic information, such as the nearest toilets, cash machines, post offices and transport hubs, you should brush up on local restaurants, theatres and attractions. You will be provided with information to help you to do this.
How do shifts work?
Shifts are available to book in blocks with morning and afternoon shifts available on all days. There three block options Monday to Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Ambassadors are asked to attend all shifts within the block that they select.
Do we get a break?
You will be offered a 20-minute break. If you have any medical or dietary requirements that require an additional break, your Team Leader will accommodate this.
Can I volunteer for two consecutive blocks of shifts?
Yes, this will be possible if the shifts are available. You are also able to complete a full day (double shift) of volunteering should you wish. In this case, we encourage you to take a longer lunch break.
Can you organise Blue Badge Parking at my location?
We will contact landowners to see if Blue Badge parking is available in the vicinity. Blue badge car parking is available at Gatwick.
Can I take part?
I’m under 18 – can I take part? No, unfortunately this opportunity is only available to those aged 18 and over. Am I eligible to volunteer in the UK? If you live inside the European Economic Area (this area includes all the European Union countries), you are able to accept voluntary work without any restrictions. If you have a student visa you can volunteer part-time, provided that you work less than 20 hours a week during your school's term-time (you can work up to 40 hours in school holidays). If you are not a student but wish to do full-time voluntary work in the UK for up to 1 year, you can apply for a volunteer's visa.
How to Apply
To apply, please follow the link to complete your application form which you should allow approximately 30-40 minutes to complete.
You will need to submit your application form by midnight on Sunday 7th February 2015.
If successful with your application, you will be invited to one of our Selection Events at City Hall on 5th or 6th March 2016. Please ensure you are available for at least one of these dates before applying.
After you submit your Team London Ambassador Application form, you will need to complete a short registration form (this will take approximately 5 minutes to complete) which registers you for the Team London Ambassador shift booking portal, Get Scheduled. If successful this is where you will book to attend one of the Selection Events.
Our volunteer needs
We need volunteers who are free at these times