Volunteering & DIY Combine To Boost Local Communities

To kickstart this series, we’d like to introduce Volunteer-It-Yourself (VIY), who provide trade and building skills to 18-24 year olds, by combining volunteering and DIY. Local youth clubs and community centre buildings in need of repair or improvement are just some of the amenities that are regenerated as a result.

Participants, who are mentored by professional tradespeople volunteering their time, can gain skills accreditations as well as access to further training, work placement and apprenticeship progression opportunities beyond VIY.

VIY was launched in 2011 and, to date, over 160 youth club buildings across England and Wales have been refurbished, involving more than 3,000 young people and more than 600 trade skills mentors. Their key partners and supporters are the home improvement retailer, Wickes, along with City & Guilds, Nesta and The Careers & Enterprise Company.

Their latest project, which opened last Friday, is a co-working space in the Trident Business Centre, Tooting, South-West London, which was developed with the help of VIY along with the Wimbledon branch of Wickes (who donated all of the materials required for the project free of charge) and 10 young volunteers.

The latest VIY project: a new co-working space at the Trident Business Centre in Tooting, South West London

The Trident Business Centre is a social enterprise using 100% of operating profits to support the charity Business Launchpad, which helps disadvantaged young people aged 16-30 to become entrepreneurs, and supports 150 start-ups every year. Home to over 80 local businesses, the Trident is a dynamic community hub for start-ups and established businesses.

Reaching full capacity, and recognising a local need for more business space, it has been a long term ambition by the Trident to have a co-working space so they can further support their clients with affordable and flexible work space.

“We’re very excited to have participated in such a project with young people, as supporting young people is at the core of what we do”, said Miranda Stirling, Project Manager at Trident Business Centre, “we now have a new co-working space which will benefit young entrepreneurs starting their own businesses.”

Projects such as this are a fantastic illustration of what VIY can deliver and the multitude of benefits that it can bring to both young people and the local communities in which they work.

VIY are constantly active throughout the UK and are always open to new projects as well as enquiries from people, groups and organisations wanting to get involved. If you’d like to get in touch, please contact them at

You can find out more about VIY on their website as well as follow them on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.