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A group of lifeboat crew members wearing inshore lifeboat kit cross a bridge onto some docks.

Training and development

RNLI/Nathan Williams

Here you can find out about the training and development opportunities that are available for RNLI volunteers.

Welcome to the RNLI crew. As an RNLI volunteer, you’ll receive a full induction and any other relevant training when you start your role. We understand how important it is for you to have access to all the information and training you need.

The RNLI has a blended learning approach, which means that learning and development can take place in several ways – face to face, including shadowing others, written or online.


When you start your role, your volunteer manager will carry out your induction and give you a pack. Or, you can download your induction pack now. As well as some forms to sign, it includes a handbook, welcome booklet, safety and safeguarding information, our latest lifesaving statistics and our volunteer expenses forms.

You’ll be welcomed into your team of fellow volunteers and get an insight into how you’ll be making a lifesaving difference. Your volunteer manager will also explain any safety, health and environment requirements and help you understand the RNLI Values and policies.

Download your pack

Role-specific learning

Lifeboat crew members are having training in the sea survival pool with a yellow and orange raft.
Lifeboat crew training
If you’re a volunteer lifeboat crew member, this is where you can find out more about the lifesaving training you will receive.
Find lifeboat crew training
An RNLI fundraising volunteer is stood in a busy train station holding a branded bucket and smiling.
Fundraising volunteer training
This is where you can find training for your role as a volunteer fundraiser. Please note, this is an external link and will take you off the RNLI site.
Get volunteer training
An RNLI water safety education volunteer is holding a lifeboat crew helmet and talking to a group of children in a school.
Water safety volunteer training
Find resources and information to help you share lifesaving water safety advice with people in your community.
Find water safety resources
An RNLI trainer is wearing a lifejacket, sunglasses and an RNLI fleece and is catching a white rope.
Learning Zone
On Learning Zone you can find a variety of courses and resources to help with your training and development. Please note, this is an external link and will take you off the RNLI site.
Head to Learning Zone

Ongoing development

Throughout your time as an RNLI volunteer, you may find there are further opportunities for learning that will help you in your role. Please discuss these with your volunteer manager.

As you gather more experience, you will be in an ideal position to support new RNLI volunteers as they start their roles. We would be really grateful for this – your experience is invaluable.

There are a variety of ways to support our lifesaving work, so many of our volunteers choose to have more than one volunteering role within the RNLI. Check out quick ways to volunteer, as many of these roles work well alongside other roles.

It’s important to us that you are enjoying your volunteer role. There may come a time when you would like to consider other opportunities. You can keep up to date with any new volunteer roles available and have a chat with your volunteer manager about further ways to volunteer.