Why SmartAid?

Smart Aid is different to other volunteering programmes due to its unique three step programme:-

  1. Needs analysis – we use this to understand what help a charity really needs rather than what it thinks it needs. So far 90 per cent of the time these needs have been different.
  2. Volunteer matching – the skill sets of the volunteer are matched directly to the needs of the charity and each SMART Goal is designed to give maximum benefit to the charity from four hours of the volunteers time.
  3. Case study – because we actually review the outcomes of the work done and put a financial figure on it, all parties can see the amazing value of the process. This also ensures that work gets done – both from the charities and volunteers perspective.


Benefits to charities

  1. Access to a professional business coaching session that identifies problem areas.
  2. Formulation of SMART Goals to address and resolve any problems / create new opportunities.
  3. Access to experienced business professionals with the skillsets that match your SMART Goal needs.
  4. Ability to access services otherwise financially unattainable.
  5. Access to potential new supporters.
  6. Greater efficiency so that charities can maintain and grow their front-line services.


Benefits to professionals


  1. Quick and easy interaction with charities – only takes 4 hours of your time.
  2. Make a real difference rather than just painting a fence.
  3. See the real financial impact you make to the charity.
  4. The opportunity to work with lots of different charities rather than becoming immersed in just one.
  5. Networking opportunities with other like-minded business professionals.
  6. Case study that can be used on your linkedin profile detailing the value you gave to the charity.


  • I would recommend to anyone thinking about volunteering with Smart Aid to just do it!

    John Readman – Smart Aid Hero
  • Initially I was a little nervous about volunteering with Smart Aid as I wasn’t confident that i was important enough and was dubious about how much support i could really give with just 4 hours of my time and if it would make any difference. It was really interesting working with AIM and i realised how much knowledge i did actually have so it has definitely improved my confidence in my skills. I was blown away later when i was told how much impact i had had. It’s amazing that a few hours of my time could contribute £3,600 to the charity - i really had no idea! I would recommend to anyone thinking about volunteering with Smart Aid to just do it!

    Clare Pennock-Halpen, Smart Aid Hero
  • I just wanted to say a massive thank you for last Thursday, we both felt a fresh sense of focus and enthusiasm following the meeting. The tempo of the meeting was ideal and kept us on track throughout. I found it was the perfect mix of relaxed enough to open up and feel happy talking about future ambitions while focussed and encouraged a challenge to the ideas. I found it enjoyable and rewarding; even if things were to move no further just the opportunity to bounce ideas off people with James and Chris's level of experience was fantastic.

    Carl Harrison AIM Education
  • James and David are onto something big. Big for Charities. Big for society they have designed an elegant solution for high quality support. I think Smart-Aid has the ability to help Charities reclaim the leadership role in helping to create a better society. And, I am pretty excited to back these guys; they have the killer combination of passion and process that will make a huge impact

    Todd Hannula, Shine Business centre
  • Support 2.0: Smart-aid brings high value targeted support with an elegant solution built for Charities in the 21st century

    Todd Hannula, Shine Business Centre
  • This is a hugely rewarding experience that increases your horizons, empathy and job satisfaction and allows you to give something back and make a real impact in your local community. This is a great opportunity to advance your professional growth and add experiences to your CV that are outside your normal business world, but show how flexible your skills are.

    James Waggott

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  • We have a target for 65% of our employees to be involved in citizenship this year

    Nationwide building society
  • We encourage our top 100 managers to link with a charitable organisation. This not only benefits their career, but is benefitting the company and our community

    Marks & Spencer
  • Volunteering activities are effective in boosting employee morale, which is particularly important in challenging times

    Patsy Francis UBS
  • I think you can talk yourself out of doing these things, because they do seem an addition to your workload, but what you get in return far exceeds what you have to give out in terms of your time. So if anyone was thinking of volunteering i would say commit to it and go for it, because you get so much back

    Sarah Austin
  • This growing body of research firmly supports the link between volunteering and employee development

  • We created a skills matrix 10 years ago to demonstrate the link between skills gained and volunteering activities. The matrix which reflects our values and key employee competencies, can be used by employees to select volunteering activities based on their development needs and skills they wish to use/practice or develop

  • Volunteering provides a viable alternative to traditional employee development

  • People, before they start volunteering, think they are pretty highly skilled. Even so, they score themselves higher after they have volunteered

  • I had a great time doing it and listening to Verlie who ran LCC telling us the story of what the centre does for kids and how they can find things out that are going on in their lives and change it made me feel I was doing the right thing and more than happy to use what I can do to help.

    Richard Nicholson – Smart Aid Hero
  • An overwhelming link between employees volunteering and developing a wider perspective about the world around them and their community

  • Community action is at the heart of National Grids CSR Strategy. Employees are encouraged to participate in volunteering activities which match their interests and development needs

  • Volunteering can also help develop key skills vital for leadership and management roles

  • PwC encourages all employees to volunteer in activities connected to one of its three key CSR areas of focus: education, employability and the environment

  • We are using community action as a recognised tool for personal development

    National Grid