Read Easy Pioneer

A rewarding challenge to work with another volunteer establish a Read Easy group in Leicester to support adults to learn to read.

About the opportunity

The Pioneer role

The role of a Read Easy Pioneer is the key to the formation of new Read Easy groups.  We are looking for second Pioneer  to work jointly with our existing Pioneer, to set up a new group from scratch, with the guidance, support and oversight of Read Easy UK and its Regional Adviser.

The Pioneer role can be broken down into three stages:

  • Networking with relevant organisations in the area to establish both the level of need for Read Easy, and the support there would be for starting a new group. Reporting back to Read Easy UK (ideally within 2 months of starting).
  • Publicising the project in your community, holding a Public Meeting and finding volunteers with appropriate skills to help form a Management Committee. Reporting back to Read Easy UK (ideally within a further 3 months).

  • Arranging the inaugural meeting for the new Management Committee and its affiliation to Read Easy UK, and then stepping down as Pioneer (ideally within one month).

Time commitment

This process takes at least six months and often longer, but it will depend in part upon how much time you have available.  We estimate that Pioneers should expect to put in the equivalent of at least one day a week during this period and this needs to include at least some part of a working day, in order to be able to make contact with the local agencies whose support you will need.  If you do not have this minimum amount of time available, you should think very carefully about whether this project is really for you.


In order for us to be confident that each new group will get off to a good start and have sound foundations, it is important that we take seriously the selection of the person who will lead the project locally. We therefore ask you to think through carefully whether you have the time, skills and enthusiasm to be able to take up the Pioneer role.

If, once you have returned your initial report in the assessment stage, we agree the viability of the group and you are still interested, we will forward you an application form to complete. Again we ask you to take time and thought over the filling in of the application form to explain why you will be a good person to act as a Pioneer, and that you also provide us with two referees. We will then make arrangements to meet with you for an informal, two-way interview to discuss the possibilities further.

If this has a positive outcome, Read Easy UK will then provide an advice session, a Pioneer Handbook and on-going advice and support to help the Pioneer reach the affiliation stage. The Pioneer will be expected to keep the Regional Adviser informed of progress and developments.  Before commencing work, the Pioneer will be asked to sign an agreement, outlining the terms on which this arrangement will be based.

Please note: for legal and insurance reasons, we ask you not to start working on the project before signing our Pioneer Agreement beyond the initial research we ask you to do into whether there is local commitment and evidence of need.

Benefits of volunteering with us:

  • Knowing that in setting up a new Read Easy Group you are making a positive impact on people’s lives. 
  • Learning to read changes people’s lives

  • Meet new people

  • Be part of a community

  • The excitement of a new challenge

  • Have fun!

  • Invitation to attend annual Read Easy Conference

Please note: When the Pioneer role comes to an end, we anticipate you taking up another role in the group. This could be a Management Committee role, or you may be interested in applying to become the group’s Coordinator. Alternatively, you may  simply want to be a reading coach. The final decisions for any of these appointments will lie with the members of the Management Committee, but the expectation would be that the Pioneer would continue to play an active role within the new group in one way or another.

This role will be working from your own home and connecting with other community groups and organisations in the local area.


  • References needed
  • Age restrictions
  • Accepts ex/offenders

Personal qualities we are looking for:

  • good communication skills (written and spoken) and confidence in networking with professionals;

  • energy, enthusiasm and determination;

  • ability to lead, inspire others and instil confidence, along with a willingness to delegate and work with others;

  • organisational skills;

  • ability to use initiative and work unsupervised;

  • familiarity with the geographical area you will be working in;

  • willingness to ask for advice and support when necessary, and to report back to the Regional Adviser at regular intervals;

  • a sharing of the Read Easy values and ethos;

  • understanding of the need to work within Read Easy guidelines and abide by Read Easy policies and procedures;

  • some previous experience and knowledge, relevant and useful to the role (this need not be directly relevant, although previous experience in literacy, or education generally, would be an advantage); 

  • recognition that the role of the Pioneer is essentially a short-term one, but can lead on to much more.

When you can volunteer

Morning Afternoon Evening
Mon Monday Morning Monday Afternoon
Tue Tuesday Morning Tuesday Afternoon
Wed Wednesday Morning Wednesday Afternoon
Thu Thursday Morning Thursday Afternoon
Fri Friday Morning Friday Afternoon


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