Volunteering for CARDS

Covid and Volunteering

In the fight against coronavirus we have only one weapon.
That is the trust we place in one another to follow the rules. 

The resources on this page are intended to inform and support you on your Volunteering journey. It was last updated 29th November 2021.

Keeping safe during restrictions

The most important aspect for you is reading and understanding the guidance, then supporting your client to collaborate with you in keeping each other safe.  You may be the only person to discuss the guidelines with them in an informed way, so it is key to set clear boundaries and stick to them.  

CARDS Staff and volunteers are eligible for priority vaccinations in their role as HEALTH WORKER. 

Vaccination – NHS Vaccination Line – 0800 030 8013 (1st, 2nd or Booster)

Drop in vaccination clinics across Edinburgh and the Lothians (Link opens in new tab)

Registering for a coronavirus vaccine (Link opens in new tab)

Getting the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine for work (Link opens in new tab)

We use a traffic light system for visit planning

The CARDS team assess the appropriate level of risk for every visiting scenario. The traffic lights give you a quick guide to the status of your visits. See below for specific advice for each level. The visit plan is both the process and the evidence that we are doing all we can to reduce risk.

Rowan Alba Visit Plan (Word download)


Visits can go ahead


Risk assessment in progress


Visits can not go ahead

Green > Most visits are operational and will continue, with approval from CARDS Team.   

Comprehensive service wide risk assessments and individual visits plans are in place.

A template of a visiting Risk assessment that we have created to keep us safe is below (CARDS Covid Visiting Risk Assessment)

A template of the simple document we hold specifically for your visits is also below.  We support you to fill this out.

If you stick to the rules you will have of piece of mind to be able to say you kept your visits as safe as possible for both of you.

Related resources

CARDS Covid visiting Risk Assessment (XLS file download)


Amber > A number of visits will be put on hold and moved to temporary telephone only 

A small number of our visits will be placed temporarily on hold and continue via telephone service ready.  This will take place at the request of either the service user, the volunteer or the re-introduction of goverment restrictions.  Your visit plan will need to be reviewed before you meet again and will likely just revert back to the previous one.  

Related resources

Service Risk Assessment April 2021 (Word download)

Red > Exceptional circumstances of some individuals will mean the face to face visits remain restricted to telephone calls only

There will be many reasons that some visits continue to be restricted to telephone sessions only. CARDS will continue to proceed with appropriate caution, and with the health and wellbeing of everyone involved in visits at the heart of all decisions made. We now have additional resources in the form of a team of highly experienced locum workers. We have developed this new resource in coordination as part of our response to lockdown, and the continual development of the service that CARDS provides. These former volunteers embody the very spirit of collaboration, and bring their enthusiasm, energy, and commitment to help us support the most isolated and at risk individuals through this current crisis, in line with government advice. Our team of Locums and CARDS staff will be able to take on signposting, risk assessing and in general doing the admin behind the scenes to make sure that this person does not fall of our radar at any time. If your client falls in to the category of requiring extra support then please speak to us in person by calling the cards phone 07715082428.  Information contained in notes will not always be flagged up.  Risk issues must be passed over verbally. 

Related resources

Scottish Government November 2021 Update


Useful information about volunteering

Ongoing support for learning & development

Volunteer resources & Forms

Covid and volunteering

Getting help from CARDS

Evaluations & reports


Frameworks & Guidance