Busy volunteer managers can find themselves focusing on the mechanics of volunteering, rather than relationships.

Working with people can be challenging. As busy volunteer managers, we can sometimes find ourselves focusing on the mechanics or processes of volunteering and not giving enough thought to how we, and the people we lead and manage, are feeling.

As we learn more about volunteering, we’re discovering an additional skill set, all about working with emotions. Recent research has suggested that the ability to work with emotions effectively is ‘likely to be the determining factor between those who succeed in harnessing the commitment, energy, and support of volunteers, and those that are seen as less effective’.

Academics at the University of Leicester undertook commissioned research and based on those findings and a successful piloting in one context, have worked in collaboration with the AVM to develop a bespoke toolkit. The toolkit is for anyone who manages, leads, supervises or works with volunteers, and it aims to help you develop and practice skills around working with emotions effectively.

We are pleased to be able to offer the toolkit completely free of charge to download. There is an English language and a Welsh language version available. However, to download the toolkit we will ask you to register through a simple web-based form. As part of registering to download the toolkit, we ask that you agree to be part of a feedback process that enables us to assess and evaluate the impact of the toolkit. This feedback process simply involves a few short questions at the time of registration, and then a feedback survey emailed to you at 6 months and 12 months from

Come on this learning journey with us and help to develop a more positive, emotionally resilient volunteering culture.

Sign up to download the free Working with Emotions in Volunteering Toolkit.

‘The Management of Volunteers in the National Trust’

Read the original research with the National Trust that led to the toolkit.