Thames River Watch Volunteer Engagement Coordinator


Walbrook Wharf, London
£24,000 - £26,999 pa pro rata

Paid • Full Time • Fixed Term Contract

Sectors: water & hydrology

Closing date: Wednesday, 11th September 2019  

Contract length: Until 30th June 2021, there is the potential to extend this with further fundraising
Full Time 5 days a week (35 Hours)
Responsible to: Thames River Watch Programme Coordinator

Job Purpose:

This is a unique and exciting role within the Thames21 team to be part of the award winning Thames River Watch programme that launched in 2013. The programme has recruited, trained and supported volunteers in their journey to become citizen scientists. Three hubs have been established that focus how communities are engaged along the river. The TRW citizen scientists gather data that is used to highlight the issue of single-use plastic in the river and to increase awareness around the key issues facing the river.

The Volunteer Engagement Coordinator will work with the Programme Coordinator to plan and deliver the roles described below. The programme is funded by Tideway, who are constructing the super sewer under the Thames. Additional funding is also applied for and received from smaller grants and funds.

Our intent for the next 2 years of the programme is to secure funding streams that will ensure the sustainability of the programme; to increase the knowledge and awareness of the health of the Thames to communities along the tidal Thames; and to encourage active involvement.

Main duties and responsibilities:

1. Volunteer opportunities:

  • Co-ordinate foreshore experiences which engage Londoners with TRW messages. This will involve planning events (including local festivals), carrying out site visits and risk assessments, liaising with the PLA and local councils, and maintaining and managing events equipment;
  • With the Programme Coordinator, arrange and deliver high profile annual events: the Big Bottle Count & Big Wet Wipe Count;
  • Support Thames21’s affiliated groups to lead community events;
  • Recruit small teams of volunteers around 5 sites to conduct regular bottle counting;
  • Oversee the fortnightly bottle count surveys, ensure safety documents are up to date and liaise with ZSL on data management

2. Community Hubs

  • Support the existing Community Hubs: ensure the Hubs are fully equipped, have effective promotion and are linked to the Local Authority;
  • Develop the Battersea Community Hub through engaging and recruiting local people. Support their involvement in monthly litter surveys and establish a system to enable clean communication between the volunteers and groups in the Hub;
  • Engage local groups and business in the Community Hubs, to include recreational groups, riverside businesses, local community groups e.g. friends of riverside parks, youth associations, scouts, residents associations;
  • Support the volunteers in each group to conduct regular litter surveys according to new protocols;
  • Seek small funding streams from local businesses to pay for ongoing equipment storage and cleaning costs;
  • Work with Thames21 Training Officer to recruit and train volunteers in Leading a Waterway Clean-up who are prepared to lead clean-ups in each of the hub areas.

3. Thames Ambassador volunteers
With the Programme Coordinator, develop the role of the Thames Ambassador. This will include:

  • Identifying and recruiting potential new Ambassadors;
  • Organising Ambassador fora to discuss and agree key messages of the project;
  • Developing content for talks and presentations;
  • Co-develop media training sessions with the Communications Officer.

4. Liaise with Tideway Main Works Contractors (MWCs)
TRW is largely funded by Tideway, the company charged with building the new Thames Tideway Tunnel to upgrade the existing sewage system. A key part of TRW is working with the Tideway Main Works Contractors (i.e. the companies contracted to building the tunnel), who support the TRW programme through staff volunteering and in-kind support. The post-holder will lead on:

  • Organising training sessions for Tideway MWCs staff;
  • Supporting Tideway MWCs staff in delivering foreshore events and monitoring;
  • Integrating Tideway MWCs work into the already existing community hubs being set up within TRW.

5. Volunteer recognition and support

  • Assist with the organisation of 3 volunteer networking events each year to bring together all TRW volunteers;
  • Manage and support volunteers with practical and pastoral support; to include linking volunteers up with the Community Hubs and bottle counting locations, mentoring volunteers as they learn our monitoring methodologies and supporting volunteers to become established within the project;
  • Ensure volunteers receive regular updates to keep them engaged in the programme;
  • Develop a new system for accurately measuring volunteer engagements with the project so that we ensure we recognise their contributions fairly.

6. Training

  • Administer the training courses: including booking venues, managing the registrations and booking confirmations;
  • Share the facilitation of the training sessions for volunteers: ‘How to be a Thames Ambassador’ and ‘Become a TRW Citizen Scientist’.

7. General Thames21 duties

  • Maintain clear records of progress, ensure all administration and statistical information is kept, and regularly upload information onto the Thames21 database;
  • Regular co-ordination with Thames21’s Communications Team to ensure key milestones are recognised and volunteer opportunities are publicised;
  • Attend Thames21 Team Meetings and liaise with Thames21 staff;
  • Ability to attend occasional weekend and evening meetings and events;
  • This job description cannot cover every issue or task that may arise within the post at various times and the post-holder will be expected to carry out other duties from time to time which are broadly consistent with those in this document.

For further details and an application form, please visit our website.

Deadline for completed application forms: 10am, Wednesday 11th September, 2019
Interviews will be held on: Monday 16th September, 2019

Completed application forms should be emailed to:
Or posted to: Michael Heath, Personnel Manager, Thames21, Walbrook Wharf, 78-83 Upper Thames Street, London EC4R 3TD

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