Volunteering with Planning Aid Wales

The planning aid service in Wales was started in 1978 by a small group of committed and energetic volunteers. Ever since then volunteers have remained central to providing a quality planning aid service for the people of Wales.

Even now that Planning Aid Wales receives core grant funding from the Welsh Government, allowing a small staff team to be employed to co-ordinate activities, the contribution of volunteers remains absolutely central to our work and helps enormously in achieving our aims.

Increasingly, Planning Aid Wales offers volunteers opportunities to get involved across the spread of our activities.

Contact us if you would like to volunteer or would like more information>>

What do volunteers do?

As a volunteer with Planning Aid Wales, you can choose to get involved in a variety of activities:

  • We provide a telephone and email Helpline service which provides eligible callers with advice and support across the spectrum of planning issues. Much of this work is done by fully qualified planning volunteers.
  • Volunteers help deliver training and other support to community groups. For this, we need experienced, qualified planners, and also people with facilitation, training and mediation skills.
  • Planning Aid Wales produces a range of guidance publications and learning materials to explain the planning system to lay people. You can volunteer to write publications content, or as a non-planner you can help with translation, proofreading or illustrations.
  • You can also volunteer to serve as a Director on the Management Board of Planning Aid Wales. For this, we need people who have experience in managing organisations, raising funds, community development, etc. Please note that planning expertise is not necessarily required.

Volunteers can choose how much time they want to commit and on which subject areas they want to work. Some deliberately choose to broaden their horizons by working in areas they wouldn’t normally come across in their day job.

Planning Aid Wales also offers volunteers opportunities for free and low-cost training, which together with casework can count towards your continuous professional development.

Who can volunteer?

Anyone can volunteer to help Planning Aid Wales, but only planners with appropriate qualifications and experience can give planning advice and support to Helpline clients.

Please note that volunteers do not have to be corporate members of the Royal Town Planning Institute.

Why should I volunteer ?

Volunteering for PAW:

  • counts towards Continuing Professional Development
  • provides a useful ‘reality check’ by giving new perspectives on how the general public interact with the planning system
  • gives insights into new areas of planning activity
  • broadens experience of how other local authorities and / or sectors operate
  • widens professional networks
  • provides valuable experience of community consultation and capacity-building
  • refreshes interest and opens up new opportunities
  • gives access to low-cost, relevant training
  • allows planners who have retired, taken a career break, or work outside mainstream planning to keep up-to-date with planning issues
  • gives newly qualified planners opportunities to broaden their experience
  • develops ‘people’ skills
  • gives something back to the wider community
  • helps improve links between the general public and the planning system
  • is rewarding and enjoyable!

If you want to know more about volunteering with Planning Aid Wales, contact us on 02920 625 004 or complete the form above.

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