Press releases

ShelterBox urgently appeals for volunteer ambassadors as it scales up its mission 

ShelterBox is appealing for volunteer ambassadors to help support its mission as more people than ever are in urgent need of emergency shelter.

1 May 2024

Two women in conversation wearing ShelterBox t-shirts

Press release – 1 May

The international disaster relief charity, ShelterBox, is urgently appealing for volunteer ambassadors to help it support communities left without shelter after disaster. 

More people than ever are in urgent need of emergency shelter, and ShelterBox is growing to ensure it can support as many people as possible. Volunteers play a critical role in supporting ShelterBox’s mission and the charity is actively seeking more to join its global network of humanitarians. 

Community Volunteer Engagement Officer for ShelterBox, Jenn Sandiford says: “ShelterBox was founded by volunteers over 20 years ago and volunteers still play a vital role in the work we do.  

“Without our ambassadors, we would not have the capacity and reach we have in amplifying the voices of people affected by disaster and conflict. 

“They are passionate, caring, and motivated people keen to make a difference. They help us raise awareness and vital funds for our work and the people we support.”

Cathy Ryan has been volunteering for ShelterBox for almost two years. She says: “I heard one phrase – ‘no one without shelter after disaster’ – it literally stopped me in my tracks. As an aim, it’s beautiful, simple and direct.

“I thought then, these were the sort of people I want to volunteer with, that was years ago, and I promised myself when I had more time, I’d track them down, so here I am.” 

The charity is currently supporting displaced people across the world, including in Malawi where thousands of people have been displaced by severe flooding in a cycle of disaster that is devastating the country.  

It’s also responding in Gaza to support some of the 1.7 million people who have been displaced by the conflict. ShelterBox has an urgent appeal for the response in which it will be working with local partners and Rotary to support thousands of people with tents and essential items like sleeping mats, blankets, and water carriers.   

Jenn adds: “We’re very lucky to have a wonderful network of volunteers right across the world who along with our fundraisers make the work that we do possible. 

“Our ambassadors get involved in many different ways. From giving presentations about our work and hosting stalls at local fetes to organising community activities and promoting our work on social media. 

“We’d love to hear from people across the UK, if you have the heart to make a difference and the spirit to take action. 

“It’s a great opportunity to meet like-minded people and, with the right support and training, gain a deeper understanding of the humanitarian sector.” 

Volunteering with ShelterBox is completely flexible around people’s skills and time commitments. However volunteers contribute their time and energy, each volunteer plays a crucial role in building a resilient future for communities in need. 

Since it was founded in 2000, ShelterBox has supported more than 2.5 million people across around 100 countries with different combinations of emergency shelter, support, and essential household items. 

To join ShelterBox’s team of dedicated volunteers, interested individuals can visit or contact Jenn Sandiford on [email protected]. 


For more information contact the press office at ShelterBox via [email protected].    

Notes to Editors    

  • Photographs and captions included.
  • Interviews available with Jenn Sandiford, community volunteer engagement officer for ShelterBox.