"It's so rewarding to see excited faces waiting by the door for our call - carrying books to return as they anxiously probe in our rucksacks for more treasure. Opening a book together is priceless."

Alex, volunteer in Fulham for 4 years

Please note due to COVID-19 we have now put our volunteer recruitment on hold while we implement new services for our families. Please register your interest by giving us your email address at volunteer@doorsteplibrary.org.uk. Once we have rolled these out to our families we will be in touch to arrange a suitable date for you to hear more volunteering with Doorstep Library and what is involved. We hope to see you soon!

Doorstep Library volunteers visit the same 5 families every week with backpacks full of books and two little stools to share their love of reading.

Our volunteers don’t just read stories though; they do the silly voices, handpick the books, and give special recommendations. By making it fun first, we get to watch children transform into budding readers and we love parents to get stuck into the sessions too.

Sometimes though, we’re just there to give a bit of extra support, whether we’re passing on information about a local family activity, lending a listening ear, or even just being a friendly face. Then, before we go, we leave behind a selection of books for each child to borrow for the week.

If this sounds like the role for you, here are the basics:

Where do we work?

We currently run projects in Hammersmith and Fulham, Westminster and Lambeth.

In Hammersmith and Fulham, Monday and Tuesday projects start at 3.45 pm and finish at 6.30 pm. Thursday projects start at 4.30 pm and finish at 7.00 pm.

In Westminster and Lambeth, we start at 4.30 pm and finish at 7.00 pm.

Doorstep Library projects run on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday afternoons.

You can view our full list of locations here to find the project that’s right for you.

Book an info session

How can you get involved?

There are two different ways you can get involved as a Home Reading Volunteer with us:

Regular Home Reading Volunteer:

As a regular reader with us, you’ll have the chance to visit the same five families each week. So the families get to know the same volunteers, we ask our regular readers to be available on a set day every week during term time only. We also ask that our volunteers make a commitment of at least 9 months so that we can slowly build up relationships with the families we visit over time.

Stand In-Home Reading Volunteer

Our projects wouldn’t run on a weekly basis without the support of our invaluable stand in volunteers, who fill in for our regular readers when they’re away. Stand in volunteers only cover reading sessions as and when they’re available and so don’t need to make a weekly commitment. They also have the chance to work with different volunteers and meet lots of different families.

There are so many benefits to volunteering with Doorstep Library, we could write a book full of them! You can check out some of them here.

  • What’s the next step?

    Hear more about all of these roles, and find out more about the charity, by coming along to one of our monthly Information Sessions.

    You’ll meet a member of the Doorstep Library team and one of our volunteers here at our office in Victoria.

    Book an info session


Thank you for your interest in supporting Doorstep Library and the children and families we work with during this challenging time.  Our projects are currently suspended until further notice but there are still several ways that you can help.

Donate here to help us continue to reach London’s most isolated families via our online offer.

Volunteer to read with children - register your interest to find out more now.

Follow us for some inspiration and further updates.

With your support, we can continue to equip children living in London’s most deprived communities with essential literacy skills, confidence and a love of reading to break the cycle of poverty, now in this crisis and in the future.