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Volunteer Collectors

This is a great role for anyone who likes driving and meeting people.  You don't need to know about tools, but you will need to know what we can take and what we can't.  For example we'll take garden rakes but not lawn rakes, we'll take computers but not printers.  All this is explained in our Tools Wanted leaflet which we send out to supporters and give to collectors.

The way it works

Collectors are advertised on our main website, where people can enter their postcode to find their nearest collectors.  We only give out your name, nearest town and TWAM email.  If people ring our Ipswich head office we will give out a phone number as that normally means they do not have an email.  We never give out addresses.


People will then contact you direct, by email or phone to let you know what they would like to donate and to arrange for you to either collect or for them to drop it off at your home.  Which option you choose is entirely up to you.  You can decide how far you are willing to travel and this information will be put on the website.  Normally it is between 15-25 miles.


Then at the agreed time you will pop round to collect the tools.  This may be a quick in and out, but sometimes it may be a bereaved wife parting with her husband's precious tools or a family member, mum's treasured sewing machine.  If so, they may appreciate a chat about what we will do with their donation over a cup of tea.  We want to be a compassionate charity and so look for compassionate volunteers.

You will need a shed or part of a garage to store the tools until the TWAM van comes to collect.  

What we offer

Collectors are given a:

  1. TWAM email to use (e.g.:

  2. TWAM branded polo shirt

  3. TWAM identity card 

  4. Volunteer Handbook

  5. Receive a monthly volunteer enewsletter

  6. An invitation to supporter TWAM Days

  7. Up to date leaflets to give out

  8. Reimbursement of travel expenses for longer journeys

Collectors can pop in to any of our Centres, ring up to speak to our office staff if they need resources or have questions and are always welcome at our head office and main Refurbishment Centre.  

We will take your safety seriously and have a Personal Safety and Lone Working Policy to support you.

You can expect to be valued and treated with respect at all times.  

What we expect

In return we expect you to respond to requests from people wanting to donate tools in a timely manner.  This doesn't mean reading your emails every day, but at least twice a week and responding to phone messages as soon as you can.  We understand people are busy and have time away and always point this out to people asking for collections, but we do need the people who are our face-to-face contact to give a good impression.

We expect you to be polite and helpful at all times.  We are a caring charity and want that care to be obvious to all our volunteers and all our supporters.  If people need to talk, we need to listen.  Many of our collectors find this the most rewarding aspect of their role.

We ask you to hand out Thank You leaflets to everyone who donates tools.  This is really important as it gives them a brilliant overview of what we do with their tools and hopefully will get us some new supporters.

We expect you to say no to things we can not use.  This can be said politely and positively by simply explaining, for example 'this can not be used in Africa, so I am sorry but I can't take it, but maybe a charity shop would value it.'  The Tools Wanted leaflet is very useful for this.

We expect you to note when the van is coming to collect and make sure you are in.  If you know you will be away, just let your van coordinator know at least two days before and they will rearrange the visit.

Overall we expect you to reflect our professionalism and compassion and leave people very happy they contacted Tools with a Mission.

Please click here for a Role Description

Interested in joining us?  Then please apply online or download the application form here

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 Volunteer Collector

What attracted you to volunteering for TWAM and to this role in particular?

I Have always been involved in the public sector and since retirement felt I needed to take on a “useful” role.  Having spent many holidays in the third world, I have seen the need first hand for charities like TWAM to help people start work through giving tools. I have  always been a hands on person and while I would like to be undertaking tool refurbishment, Ipswich was a step too far travel-wise. so Tool collection seemed the next best option for me.

What is a typical volunteering shift for you like?

A typical day is a trip out by appointment to meet one or more people who wish to donate tools to TWAM. I introduce myself and hand over a “thank you” leaflet and then load the tools they have to give. Sometimes a second trip is required as I only have a small car. People then usually wish to chat about common interests which I enjoy.


What is your favourite thing about volunteering

My favourite thing about this small role is engaging with people in a positive way who have  shared values. and also that II get out out and about  and meet interesting people , some of whom are real characters.   



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  Volunteer Collector

What attracted you to volunteering for TWAM and to this role in particular?

My father had been a mechanic and I spent half my youth searching for his ½ inch AF Spanner.  Although I didn't inherit his skills, I came to recognise the importance of tools to people's livelihoods.  When I retired I had time to spare, and I felt it was wonderful to help enable hibernating tools to be awakened, spruced up and matched with people who want to support themselves

What is a typical volunteering shift for you like?

I  love the very random nature of calls.  One day I can be called to pick up chisels which a regular supporter sharpens and fits into home-turned handles, then the next I can be picking up 3 sewing machines from places in 3 adjoining towns!


What is your favourite thing about volunteering

It give me the opportunity to meet many generous and thoughtful people.  Despite what you might think if you read the press there is a lot of goodwill in this world!