We couldn’t run our calendar of fundraising events without our dedicated volunteers. We are looking for enthusiastic people to give up a few hours of their time to help out an event. You will get meet new people, develop your skills as you interact with the public and/or our beneficiaries, and every penny you raise will help us to support people with learning disabilities in Reading and their families.

AYL volunteers 2018


Are You Listening? Music Festival (April)

The biggest event in our calendar is this pop/indie/rock/dance festival in Reading town centre. Each year the festival raises over £7,000 and we need 60 volunteers to sell tickets and drinks, collect donations, hand out flyers and crowd count on the day.

Volunteers receive a free festival ticket, meal and T-shirt. We also need volunteers to collect donations at smaller gigs we hold during the summer, usually at Oakford Social Club. Find out how to join the festival team here.


Fairs (summer and winter)

We hold our Summer and Christmas Fairs at our premises in Alexandra Road. Volunteers help us to set up the stalls, sell cakes and raffle tickets, and make teas and coffees.


Raffle Tickets (spring and autumn)

We usually have two major raffles a year with some sought-after prizes (e.g. Dinner at the BT Tower, £1000 of John Lewis vouchers). Volunteers are key in helping us to sell as many tickets as possible in the run up to the draw.


Flyering and Tin Shakes (throughout the year)

Our charity also needs volunteers on an ad hoc basis, for example, to contact companies to request raffle donations, distribute our event flyers, and take part in street collections, so contact us if you have some spare time and want to get involved.


Ebay (throughout the year)

Our ebay volunteers help to grow our income from online selling and recycling by sorting, photographing and listing items. We also need people to volunteer their house or place of work as a drop-off point for ebay donations.


Here's what one of our volunteers has to say about his experience of getting involved with Reading Mencap's fundraising:

"My name is Bob Hughes and I started my association with Reading Mencap, via my involvement with the annual Are You Listening? Festival – as a volunteer and then volunteer co-ordinator.

"The Festival itself has the quality control set very high by the organisers and has been well received by my social circle, even though we are no spring chickens! It is certainly good value for money – especially considering the diverse venues involved and myriad artists and bands playing. You might not catch all of them, but you are sure to discover something that you would have never otherwise heard before.

"I became involved because I wanted to give up my time to try and generate more than I could actually contribute myself, and I am fortunate enough to have a supportive employer who also contributes towards my involvement.

"Outside of my day-job, I am also a certified fitness instructor, so I set up lunchtime boot camps at work on a block-booking voluntary contribution basis to ‘encourage attendance’! The donations were split between Reading Mencap and another charity. Thus my work colleagues and I got away from the desk at lunchtime; we networked as we got fit; and some of my favourite charities benefited too! It was win-win all around!

"So, think what skills you possess that could turn into an earning opportunity for Reading Mencap – or just volunteer your time! The charity is making a big difference to the local community and can only do that by expanding its a pool of volunteering resources for its numerous fundraising events."


If you would like further information about any of the opportunities listed above, please contact or call 0118 966 2518.

Click here for our full calendar: Upcoming Events