Volunteer Assembly

Volunteer Assembly 1
The Duddingston Conservation Society can now re-pot and sell plants in all weathers!

Our Volunteer Assembly programme is BACK, baby!

Volunteer Assembly 2
You might have noticed we have taken a wee break from public call-outs over the past few months. We wanted to revise and refresh our Volunteer Assembly programme to make it the best it can be for you, people, place and planet. And now we’re ready and raring to hear your ideas!

Read on to find out more about the initiative and fill out the form (linked below) to tell us about your good idea. We will then be in touch once we know if and how we can help!

  • Are you a change-maker in your community?
  • Do you have a good idea? Good for people, place and/or planet?
  • Do you need tools, skills and human power to turn it into reality?

This is where the Volunteer Assembly comes into action and we want to hear from you!

We have tools, skills and human power

Pitch your idea for a community build via the form below. We’ll let our volunteers select the builds they’d most like to support. If your idea is selected, you’ll will be invited to our next Volunteer Assembly event (taking place twice per year – see dates below). This will be your chance to go into your plans in more detail and meet some of the volunteers who will help you make it a reality!

We particularly welcome ideas from individuals and organisations that we’ve not worked with before.


💪 Builds taking place over🗓️ Volunteer Assembly Events (save the date: presence required if your idea is selected)Ideas submission deadline
July – August 2024Evening of Friday 28 June 202410th June midnight
April – May 2025Evening of Friday 28 March 202510th March

How does it work?

1. Feasibility review

Once your idea has been submitted, we’ll review its feasibility and relevance. Some ideas might be more suitable for our other charitable programmes.

2. Selection process

We will then present your ideas as well as all the other valid submissions to our team of volunteers. They will be invited to vote to select the ideas they want to help turn into reality.

They are invited internally to vote twice a year in two different rounds, one for Spring builds and one Summer builds.

3. Planning (and a party!)

If your idea is selected,

  1. You’ll be introduced to an ETL staff liaison and/or volunteer build coordinator. They will help you bring everything together (from budget to design, to workshop access) with support from our staff.
  2. You will be invited to our social event, the Volunteer Assembly. Please make sure you save the date as this is key in the planning! It allows you to get the precious help of many volunteers in one evening to properly flesh out the plans.
4. Making it happen

Once a plan is in place, our volunteers and your community will come together, with tools and materials, and do the actual build!

Past community builds

Volunteer builds we have undertaken so far include:

– making a set of giant musical instruments for Dads Rock,

– designing and building a garden space with a Cyrenians community,

– building a large and beautiful bar for the Hidden Door Festival,

– reshaping a Bikes for Refugees container workspace,

– designing and setting up an irrigation system for a community garden in the Meadows,

– building a range of large planters for the Grass Roots Remedies cooperative to run their classes (read all about it in their lovely blog post )

– building a potting shed, outdoor furniture, and a shop for a community garden in Duddingston (watch the video),

– upgrading the shelving and storage solutions of Ferry Rd greengrocer/refillery @gullsgrocery. Gulls Grocery are absolutely wonderful people, not just providing a shop, but supporting the community that supports them (free winter coats etc for anyone that needs one – no questions asked).

– and many others, we even repaired a pirate ship!

Let’s see what we can do together!

Not sure we can help?

Any questions? Drop an email to daisy@edinburghtoollibrary.org.uk.

Reach out if you’re not sure about applying. We’ll give you a call and help you figure out if this is the right opportunity for your idea.

For example, if you don’t have a lot of flexibility, or you need something built by a fixed date and have a bit of money, we can still help, but we might recommend you for our Tools For Life programme. (This is a programme where we pair mentors and trainees to build things for community groups like yours while helping raise funds for the Tool Library.)

Volunteer Assembly 13

Meet Dorothy our mascot

Dorothy the Chop Saw happily comes along to every outside build we do in the community. From bird tables, potting sheds, even a vegetable shop, with her power and versatility, Dorothy makes any project possible. Your donation will make sure this scheme continues to help both Dorothy and local communities thrive.