What is the Voluntary/Third Sector?

The Voluntary Sector, often known as the Third Sector, are not for profit organisations whose primary aim and purpose is to create a social impact,  focusing on public welfare,  environment and cultural objectives.  

The Voluntary/Third sector acts is an umbrella term that covers a wide range of different groups, organisations and charities, who will have different structures and purposes, but each playing an important role in providing services and support to communities or specific client groups such as older people, disabilities, young people etc.  

Some organisations devote themselves to a particular issue or group in society who may require support and representation. This can be at a local, national, or global level.

Others may provide local services relating to a particular issue or area of support such as running a women’s refuge or providing a homeless shelter. Some organisations will focus on a whole range of issues or services that impact communities and help to support social action or encourage civic pride.  

Thurrock has a very strong voluntary sector and there are many opportunities for people to become involved through employment or volunteering. The COVID 19 pandemic has raised the profile of the voluntary sector, and has shown the important work that charities, individuals and sector organisations do in helping and support people.

Facts & Figures

163,000 Charities in the UK
£12.2bn Contributed to the UK Economy
827,00 People Employed by UK Charities


Working or volunteering in the Voluntary/Third sector is extremely rewarding. As a career path, it focuses on driving change and helping communities, and many people get into employment through volunteering or doing internships within organisations.

Although as a sector, it may not offer the highest paid jobs, the work you do can help to improve the lives of others, whilst giving you a satisfaction of knowing you are making a difference. Working in the sector can be difficult and frustrating at times, but it helps if you are passionate, dedicated and have a genuine interest in what you do.

Volunteering for a charity or organisation can give people the opportunity to learn new skills as well as developing the ones they already have. It can provide an invaluable opportunity to gain experience and a better understanding of what the charity primary aim and purpose is.  

People working for charities tend to find themselves working across a number of different projects, so organisations are looking for people who are flexible and able to multitask .  This is usually great for people who prefer each day to be different from the next.


Skills or attributes needed

  • Enthusiasm and dedication
  • Motivation
  • Commitment
  • Team-working and people skills
  • Pro-active
  • Flexibility
  • Team Player
  • Compassionate
  • Good Communication skills
  • Administrative and organisational skills



A selection of the types of roles available within the Voluntary/Third Sector:

  • Administration
  • IT & Website Design
  • Fundraising
  • Community Development
  • Marketing
  • Management
  • Policy & Research
  • Campaigning
  • Finance and Legal
  • Training
  • PR & Communications
  • Operations & Delivery
  • Volunteer Recruitment
  • Business Development
  • Digital
  • Human Resources

You can search for Voluntary /Third sector jobs through: www.thirdsector.co.uk and www.charityjob.co.uk


Third Sector Job Vacancies in Thurrock

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Learning Opportunities

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