Saying 'thank you'

Our volunteers are essential to Guide Dogs. Without them, we simply couldn’t help as many people with sight loss live the life they choose. Whether by raising a puppy or fostering our dogs, raising funds which are vital to our work, or supporting people with sight loss getting out and about. Our volunteers support us in a huge range of ways, and we want to make sure that they feel appreciated, valued and an integral part of our organisation.

On this page

Send a simple message of thanks

Everybody appreciates receiving a well-timed thank you for something they’ve done, especially when they’ve gone the extra mile.

Genuine displays of gratitude help create the positive volunteering culture we’re all striving to achieve at Guide Dogs, so we encourage all our staff and volunteers to show how much they appreciate one another by saying a simple ‘thank you’.

Why not send someone a quick thank you by email or text message? Or could you surprise someone with a handwritten note somewhere they are bound to stumble across it?

Nominate a volunteer for a Pat on the Back

The Pat on the Back scheme is designed to recognise outstanding achievements of individuals who volunteer or work for Guide Dogs which contribute towards our overall purpose and demonstrate our behaviours in action.

Anyone can nominate a volunteer for a Pat on the Back. Whether you are a staff member, a fellow volunteer, one of our service users, or a member of the public who has been touched by the efforts of one of our volunteers, why not take 10 minutes to nominate them?

Nominated volunteers will receive a special Pat on the Back pin badge and a ‘thank you’ letter with your nomination message and endorsed by our Head of Volunteering. They will also automatically be entered into consideration for our annual Local Volunteer Awards.

Nominate a volunteer today via the Pat on the Back volunteer nomination form.

If you’re a volunteer who would like to nominate a member of staff for a Pat on the Back, please get in touch with your local Volunteering Coordinator.

Local Volunteer Awards

Another way we celebrate the amazing efforts of our volunteers is at the Local Volunteer Awards. During Volunteers’ Week on 1st-7th June each year, we host various events at our local sites to recognise the contribution of our volunteers and share their inspirational stories with others.

The nomination window usually runs from March to April each year, after which a judging panel will have the difficult task of shortlisting the nominations by category.

Look out for information about the awards in our monthly volunteer newsletter The Guide.

Long Service Awards

Many of our volunteers dedicate a considerable amount of their time to supporting Guide Dogs over many years.

After one year of volunteering with us, we formally recognise this milestone with the offer of a pin badge and certificate, along with a letter of thanks. This is repeated at milestones of 5 years, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50 years and then at 10-year intervals thereafter.

60 years and above will receive a letter signed by the Chairperson of Guide Dogs and an invitation to the Guide Dogs People Awards.

If you have any questions about our Long Service Awards, please contact the Volunteering Office - or 0345 143 0191