Volunteering Opportunities

Flood groups

Since the recent flooding in 2012, 2013 and 2015, community flood groups have been set up in Todmorden, Callis Bridge, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Luddendenfoot, Sowerby Bridge, Copley, Elland and Brighouse.

These groups consist of local residents who aim to help their communities before, during and after flooding. Membership is open to all and support and help are always welcome.

What do flood group volunteers do?

  • Work for and on behalf of residents and businesses to help find ways to limit the effects of flooding.

  • Signpost flood resilience methods and provide information regarding the availability of household and business surveys, grants, funding etc.

  • Act as a representative voice for communities with all stakeholders including the Environment Agency, Calderdale and local Town and Parish Councils, Yorkshire Water, the Emergency Services, local business representatives and Voluntary Organisations.

  • Reflect the interests and wishes of residents and businesses and take action appropriate to those at risk.

  • Participate in events organised by or through the flood groups such as leaf clearance, fundraising, exhibitions, reporting blocked drains, receiving reports from residents and businesses, distributing information, etc.

  • Provide information about how to register complaints or requests for work to be carried out by organisations such as Calderdale Council (blocked drains, culverts), Yorkshire
    Water (blocked sewers), etc.

  • Help draw up local flood plans that detail the action needed and any resources required to help manage flooding locally.

  • Manage local flood stores and release resources to assist those affected before, during and after flooding.

  • Join forces with the National Flood Forum and other national and local voluntary groups who, among other activities, assist and support flood groups and Parliament and the insurance industry on behalf of Flood Action Groups.

If you would like to know more about volunteering with a flood group, contact the Environment Agency at Lateral, 8 City Walk, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 9AT, by phone (020 3025 6869), or by email (YorkshireFloodResilience@environment-agency.gov.uk).

Flood wardens

Flood wardens are local volunteers, trained and co-ordinated by the Environment Agency. For further information on what they do (and don't do), click here.

What do flood wardens do?

  • Communicate with the Environment Agency regarding flood warning information.

  • Actively encourage local residents and businesses to sign up for the Environment Agency’s flood warning service online by calling Floodline on 0345 988 1188.

  • Offer advice and information to residents and businesses, especially about property resilience measures and any available funding.

  • Check that local people have received flood warnings, once issued.

  • Attend regular meetings with people at risk and those who have a role in assisting our communities.

  • Identify and support vulnerable members of our communities.

  • Provide feedback to Calderdale and local Town and Parish Councils and the Environment Agency about people who are at risk and living in areas prone to flooding.

  • Provide vital information before, during and after flood events such as information on blocked brooks, streams, culverts, drains and the number of properties flooded.

  • Help manage local flood stores and resources to assist those affected before, during and after flooding.

  • Help manage resources in co-operation with the flood groups.

Anyone interested in becoming a Flood Warden should contact the Environment Agency at Lateral, 8 City Walk, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 9AT, by phone (020 3025 6869), or by email (YorkshireFloodResilience@environment-agency.gov.uk).

Countryside Services

Do you have an interest in preserving Calderdale’s countryside?
Calderdale Countryside and Woodlands Service is responsible for maintaining and preserving Calderdale’s unique landscape.
We are always looking for volunteers to assist us in our work. Volunteer opportunities include practical work, working with school groups, leading guided walks, working in the shop at Ogden Water or survey work.
For further details, please call Philip Singh on 07841 784185 or email Philip.Singh@calderdale.gov.uk

Other volunteering opportunities


Treesponsibility aims to help educate people about the need for action on climate change and to involve local communities in tree-planting projects to improve our local environment, biodiversity and resilience against flooding for the benefit of local people and future generations.

They run regular tree planting days and offer private planting events for schools, businesses and parties. Information on upcoming opportunities can be found on the website.

Website: www.treesponsibility.com
Email: treesponsibility@yahoo.co.uk
Phone: Call Christina on 07709 690368

Forus Tree

Forus Tree is a not for profit workers cooperative founded to bring about positive environmental change in the Calder Valley and beyond, working with landowners, local councils and trusts on environmental projects at the heart of the community. Its mission is to plant, manage, promote and protect woodland, wildflower and wildlife habitats with the aim of increasing biodiversity and access to woodland for the enjoyment of local communities and future generations.

Every Friday is Forus Friday, a weekly volunteer meeting at Daisy Bank, the site of their new tree nursery. Forus Tree always welcomes new volunteers and are committed to sharing their skills with people of the community. They also have opportunities for river clearance and balsam bashing amongst other environmental and ecological projects. As the seasons change, so do the jobs!

For more information on how to get involved and for a volunteer pack email info@forustree.org

Visit Forus Tree website www.forustree.org 

Calder Future

Calder Future is a partnership between the local community and agencies that have responsibility for waterways within the Calder Valley, to bring a co-ordinated approach to river and canal improvements and provide volunteering opportunities for local people and businesses.

Its river stewardship scheme involves the removal of litter, debris and vegetation from the waterways. Information on upcoming opportunities can be found on the website.

Website: http://calderfuture.org.uk
Email: info@calderfuture.org.uk

Slow the Flow

Slow The Flow was set up to look scientifically at the issue of why and how the Calder Valley floods and to look at natural flood prevention measures and solutions to slow the volume of water which comes down the hillsides into the River Calder.

Currently their primary project is the construction of leaky dams at Hardcastle Crags with the National Trust. Information on upcoming opportunities can be found on the website.

Website: http://slowtheflow.net
Email: secretary@slowtheflow.net

Moors for the Future Partnership

The Moors for the Future Partnership is working to conserve blanket bog habitat across the Peak District National Park and South Pennines and repair the damage caused by years of industrial pollution and moorland fires. This is resulting in improved landscapes, plants, wildlife, water quality, flood resilience and carbon storage.
More information on the wide range of volunteering opportunities available can be found on the website. If you are a group leader/member looking for volunteering opportunities for your group, please contact them directly.

Website: http://www.moorsforthefuture.org.uk/volunteering-opportunities
Email: moorcitizens@peakdistrict.gov.uk
Phone: 01629 816585

Calder Valley Clean Up

Calder Valley Clean Up was formed to clear the debris that was spread across the Calder Valley following the floods of Boxing Day 2015. Bit by bit they are clearing the detritus that got caught up in trees and bushes, along the river-bank and canal towpath, in the fields and woodlands.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/Caldervalleycleanup
Email: info@caldervalleycleanup.org.uk
Phone: Call Trevor Bannister on 07340 525294

Calder Rivers Trust

Calder Rivers Trust operates across Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield working to protect, promote and enhance our freshwater ecosystems for both people and wildlife.

They offer a range of volunteering opportunities to suit a variety of skills and experience. Information on current volunteer roles can be found on the website.

Website: www.calderandcolneriverstrust.org
Email: talk@calderandcolneriverstrust.org

Canal & River Trust

Canal & River Trust is a charity that protects over 2,000 miles of waterways in England and Wales. They are also responsible for an enormous network of bridges, embankments, towpaths, aqueducts, docks and reservoirs and more.

Their volunteers help with all aspects of their work, so they always have a large variety of roles available. More information can be found on their website.

Website: https://canalrivertrust.org.uk
Twitter: @CRTcontactus
Phone: 0303 040 4040


Yorkshire Invasive Species Forum

If you're looking to attend an invasive species volunteer day, have a look at Yorkshire Invasive Species Forum (YISF)'s new calendar for upcoming events such as balsam bashing task days.

If your organisation or community group is holding its own invasive species events, email YISF to get these added to the calendar and promote them to a wider audience.

Website: https://ywt-data.org/inns-mapper/event-calendar
Email: invasives@ywt.org.uk
Twitter: @YISF__INNS