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Gain unique insight into a world that few people see

Volunteering with the IMB is a rewarding role where you can make a real difference to people’s lives and learn new skills.

This role gives me a real sense of purpose in helping vulnerable people and gives new insights into the reality of immigration in the UK.
Jessica Hughes, Pharmaceuticals

Do the right thing

IMB members are unpaid public appointees, appointed by ministers to provide independent oversight of what happens in places of detention.

It is a varied and rewarding role. You could be talking to a prisoner or detained person who is worried or vulnerable, who isn’t able to access the support they need, or who needs help to sort out some practical problems.

You will get to see and report on everything that happens behind the walls: what day-to-day life is like, whether there is enough education and training to help with rehabilitation, what support there is for the most vulnerable, how physical and mental health needs are met.  

Volunteering gives you the opportunity to work with IMB members with lots of knowledge and experience.
Susan Adzakey, Prevention Officer, adult social services

Gain valuable work experience

Hear from Naomi, who tells us how her role as an IMB member gave her a career in the Ministry of Justice.

There are lots of reasons why people choose to volunteer with the IMB.

Whether you’re studying, thinking of making a career change but lack the relevant experience, looking for ways to increase your confidence after having taken a career break, or recently retired, you will gain valuable skills in a rewarding way.

  • Gain transferable employment skills such as decision making, teamwork and influencing others
  • Get training and mentoring from existing IMB members
  • Employees who volunteer usually have greater job satisfaction

We welcome people from all walks of life

You don’t need qualifications to volunteer in a prison or immigration detention facility with the IMB. Your values are more important. You need to be over 18, enthusiastic, open minded and a natural communicator. You also need to be a good listener who is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion.

In order to apply you will need to:

  • commit to making around 2 to 3 visits a month
  • live within 30 miles (or a 45 minute journey) from the volunteering location, although this could be more in certain areas
  • declare potential conflicts of interest, for example any family connection with the prison or immigration detention facility

We are keen to increase membership diversity, especially from under-represented groups such as young people, those of working age and individuals from minoritised groups.

Find volunteering vacancies

See if there’s a volunteering opportunity in a prison or immigration detention facility near you.

See current vacancies