Welcome to Volunteering with cards!



We aim to give you a supportive, rewarding, interesting and challenging experience. We hope that you will find the information contained on the volunteer pages of the website to be informative and easy to use. If, however, you have any problems navigating around the pages or finding what you are looking for please contact us. We also welcome your suggestions for the website and resources for volunteers.

Please go to our Contact Us page to learn a bit more about the different roles of the CARDS team and who you can contact for information and advice.

Below by way of introduction to your role we have included some compulsory reading for new CARDS volunteers, click on the links to download volunteer policies and procedures and useful forms (e.g. expenses reimbursement forms).

Enhanced volunteering

If you would like to get more involved with the service please contact us. We have volunteers who are involved in fundraising, social media, volunteer support and supervision, service evaluations, and administration.  We also have volunteers who have an advisory role as they have expertise in an area relevant to our service and clients. If you are interested in being more involved please contact us.

Who Volunteers with Cards

We currently have 40 volunteers supporting the CARDS service. We are a unique volunteer led service in Edinburgh working with people who have a history of problematic alcohol use and we work with people regardless of where they are in their life; whether they are currently drinking, in recovery or contemplating a lifestyle change. Without our volunteers the service quite simply would not exist and many vulnerable people in the community would be without any kind of support.

At CARDS we periodically review the level of inclusiveness and equality of our volunteer pool by monitoring the diversity of our volunteer team. We do this in order to put into place, where needed, steps to increase diversity and representation from our local community, this may involve for example reaching out to different groups in our community to talk about what we do. We welcome feedback and input from our current volunteers on ways to improve representation.

Useful resources and training opportunities


Resources and Forms

The intention of these resources is for the volunteer to be able to provide information on sources of support, advice or activities to clients when they request it (sign posting). Volunteers should not attempt to give any advice they are unsure of without contacting CARDS staff first.


Policies and procedures

All Rowan Alba services open their doors to you and we encourage you to explore and be curious about all that goes in our world. All services will be happy to invite you along for a introductory session so please feel free to enquire.


On Call Rota

Rowan Alba On Call Rota is on hand to deal with any emergency situation that may occur during your visit with your client.  From time to time we may need to make changes to this rota so please remember that it is your responsibility to check who is on call before your appointments.


Volunteer Training Opportunities

‘Rowan Learning Centre’ will be delivering high quality, affordable, qualifications and training to staff and volunteers from Rowan Alba and other Third sector organisations across Scotland.

The professional and personal development of every member of the Rowan Alba team is key to our core values and philosophy, and Rowan Learning Centre will be offering bespoke learning opportunities appropriate to all of the people who allow Rowan Alba to flourish, you.


Peer Support

At CARDS we have recently included a PEER SUPPORT element to complement the range of the support that we can offer. This step was taken in response to feedback received from our volunteers and Clients who felt that the sharing of “Lived Experience” in the correct context would be beneficial in supporting positive change.


Support, Supervision and Important Dates

As a CARDS Volunteer you have agreed to attend at least one supervision session a month as part of your role. We have made several dates available throughout the year (twice a month), you can either attend a CARDS group supervision or an Adam Burley Supervision session or both. You also have the opportunity for one to one supervision sessions on request.

What is ARBD?

Alcohol Related Brain Damage

Alcohol Related Brain Damage is a spectrum of disorders that merge and overlap, changing the structure and function of the brain through long term consumption of alcohol (A Fuller Life, 2004). As a result, difficulties with learning, retaining or recalling information occur alongside physical symptoms. A specific diagnosis is not essential for the CARDS service to support the individual. For a full explanation of ARBD and its potential effects on an individual we direct volunteers towards Alcohol Concerns resources:

Alcohol Concern ARBD Resources

For further training on ARBD all volunteers are required to complete the Online ARBD awareness training – See training resources page for information (LINK).

Where we are

Rowan Alba Limited

Head Office, 89-95 Fountainbridge, Edinburgh, EH3 9PU

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