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Volunteering for us

Policy and Public Affairs Intern – activities and expectations

Based in Borough, Central London

About DrugScope

DrugScope is the national membership organisation for the drug and alcohol sector and the UK's leading independent centre of expertise on drugs and drug use. We are a registered and independent charity. DrugScope has around 450 members in England, primarily voluntary and statutory sector providers of treatment for drug and / or alcohol use.

About the role

Role overview (PDF)

Interns will be based in DrugScope’s policy team and will provide operational and research support for DrugScope’s work to influence policy in order to promote informed and reasoned debate about drugs. Interns will also help with the organisation of DrugScope’s member engagement work, and other administrative work as appropriate.

DrugScope will endeavour to provide interns with experience of a broad range of public policy and membership engagement activities.

Interns will be asked to agree to two days per week at our office for a period of 3 months, or to an agreed period of time associated with a particular project. The internships are voluntary, and days and hours will be flexible and discussed on joining.

The internships are voluntary and unpaid. Interns will be paid travel expenses; for an intern coming from a long distance, a contribution will be made. Interns will be paid reasonable lunch expenses.

Main activities

  1. To conduct desk-based research.
  2. Write briefings on policy issues for DrugScope staff.
  3. To provide administrative and operational support for DrugScope’s policy and membership work – for example by liaising with members and stakeholder organisations, identifying contacts and arranging meetings.
  4. Support the organisation of consultation events with DrugScope’s members.
  5. Accompany DrugScope staff to external meetings and events.
  6. Provide support to other colleagues as required.
  7. Liaise with the Policy and Membership team to negotiate an internship plan and prioritise tasks as necessary.
  8. Support DrugScope’s partnership activities, including Making Every Adult Matter (MEAM, in partnership with Clinks, Homeless Link and Mind) and the Recovery Partnership (the Substance Misuse Skills Consortium, the Recovery Group UK and DrugScope).

Skills and expectations

  1. An interest in drug, alcohol, public health and / or criminal justice policy and some relevant knowledge.
  2. Ability to work in an open plan office.
  3. Experience of using MS Word and other common office software.
  4. An ability to engage and work with colleagues and partners at all levels.
  5. Skills in researching public policy issues.
  6. Ability to produce clear and concise written reports.
  7. Strong communication skills.
  8. Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  9. A commitment to DrugScope’s values and beliefs.

We welcome applications from people with personal experience of recovery from drug and / or alcohol use.

All DrugScope's work is shaped by our core values and beliefs.

DrugScope believes in drug policy that:

  • minimises drug and alcohol-related harms and supports recovery
  • promotes health, well-being, inclusion and integration
  • recognises and protects individual rights
  • recognises and respects diversity

DrugScope is committed to:

  • promoting rational drug policy debate that is informed by evidence
  • involving our membership in all our policy work
  • ensuring our policy interventions are informed by front-line experience
  • speaking independently, and free from any particular sectoral interests
  • highlighting the unique contribution of the voluntary and community sector

How to apply

Please respond by email to Paul Anders ( ) including a covering letter explaining why you are interested in this voluntary position and an up to date CV.

Please respond no later than 5pm, Friday 3rd October 2014.