Prisoners’ Families Helpline Volunteer

Prisoners' Families Helpline

Purpose of this role 

To provide advice and information to family members, friends, prisoners and professionals by responding to incoming telephone calls. You will respond to queries by providing direct information, signposting to other relevant organisations and making referrals to Pact colleagues as well as other family support services such as BarnardosSpurgeons and Nepacs.  Below are a few examples of calls received on the helpline: 


  • Trying to find out which prison someone has been sent to 
  • Concerns regarding the wellbeing of a prisoner 
  • How to keep in contact with someone in prison 
  • How to send money to someone in prison 
  • What to do after someone has been arrested 
  • What support is available to someone after release from prison 

Time commitment & location 

This role is being offered remotely, so you will need to have access to a laptop/computer, a smart phone and an internet connection. A quiet working environment is also required.  

Time commitment:

We expect volunteers to commit to working a minimum of one shift per week, for a period of at least 6 months. 

The helpline is open 7 days a week, 9am-8pm Monday-Friday and 10am-3pm on weekends. The shifts we have available are as follows: 

Monday – Friday: 9am-1pm,1pm-5pm or 5pm-8pm 

Weekends: 10am-3pm 

(If you wish to work multiple shifts, please let us know) 

What you will be doing 

  • Answering daily telephone calls, providing information and guidance 
  • Escalating any urgent/imminent safeguarding calls with the prison 
  • Making referrals and signposting to Pact colleagues and other external organisations 
  • Updating an Excel spreadsheet logging all calls taken  
  • Communicating with other colleagues on shift as well as Shift Supervisors 

The type of person we are looking for 


Skills / Abilities 


Working on a helpline or experience of talking to people on the phone in a professional capacity 


Working in a team 


Handling sensitive data 




















Verbal & written 

communication skills 


Good I.T. literacy 





Can-do attitude 




Genuine desire to help people 



What we offer 


You will be required to undertake our Safeguarding and Professional Boundaries training online, as well as attending our role-specific Helpline training via Zoom. You will also have access to various other training modules on our new eLearning platform. 


This role is subject to: 2 satisfactory references 

Support and Supervision 

We will provide a full induction and regular supervision to support you in the role. 

Benefits to you  

  • Make a huge difference to prisoners and families 
  • Gain valuable experience and a strong awareness of the Criminal Justice System 
  • Gain practical skills and experience 
  • Develop skills and enhance your CV for future employment / volunteering opportunities 
  • Join a great team of supportive, respectful and caring individuals 

Next steps 

To apply for this role, please visit the following link:  

For any questions about the role please email:  


For more information about Pact please see the following link:  

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