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Virtual Village Hall frequently asked questions

What is the Virtual Village Hall?

The Virtual Village Hall is an online activity hub and community designed by Royal Voluntary Service, with support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery. It helps people stay physically and mentally active, connected and having fun. From crafts to Zumba, singing to meditation, there are over 600 sessions available to view on-demand, with new content added regularly. Sessions are live-streamed daily on Facebook and are led by expert tutors. Followers take part in real time or view on-demand via the Virtual Village Hall website or YouTube. Where activities require equipment, ingredients or materials, these are low-cost and easy to source.

How is the Virtual Village Hall linked to Royal Voluntary Service?

The Virtual Village Hall was launched by the Royal Voluntary Service when the COVID-19 lockdown closed community centres and village halls in the spring of 2020 - including 352 Royal Voluntary Service volunteer-run community-based groups - the charity knew that people’s physical and mental wellbeing would suffer, particularly for those at risk of loneliness, social isolation or with long-term health conditions.

Without stimulation, connection, purpose and enjoyment, people shielding and self-isolating were extremely vulnerable. Work started immediately to transform its community programmes into a digital platform, and, within a matter of weeks, the Virtual Village Hall opened its doors. In the short term, the Virtual Village Hall aims to support the nation’s health and wellbeing through the COVID-19 pandemic, lockdowns and recovery and in the longer term provide a health and wellbeing intervention, particularly to support those with long-term health conditions and people who may not be able to get out and about. Activities offered on the Virtual Village Hall aim to help and support people’s physical and mental wellbeing, nutrition and hydration, community connection and to have fun!

Do I need to pay to access the page/classes?

No, all our classes are FREE to watch and we will never ask for you to pay to view or interact with our Virtual Village Hall sessions, but donations to Royal Voluntary Service are appreciated. Text VVH to 70570 to donate £1 today or VVH5 to donate £5 or VVH10 to donate £10. Or donate online. Royal Voluntary Service receives 100% of your donation. Texts cost your donation amount + 1 standard message at your standard network rate. Always get the bill payer’s permission. UK networks only.

What kind of sessions do you offer?

Categories are: Creative, Arts & Crafts; Exercise & Dance; Gardening & the Outdoors; Hair & Beauty; Health & Wellbeing; Music & Singing; Needlework & Textiles; Reading & Writing; Recipes & Baking; Something Different; Special Events; and Technology Skills. Sessions are available to access 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and feature both live and pre-recorded activities to join in with.

How do I know what’s on this week/each week?

We release all classes for the week ahead on our Facebook page the Friday before – you can pick and choose out of these which ones you would like to ‘set a reminder’ for.

We then release the timetable post on the Monday for upcoming activities – if you have missed this, you will find it at the top of the Facebook page. Where you see ‘Home About Live’ etc. simply swipe left on this list and you’ll come to ‘Posts’ just underneath you’ll find the schedule for the week. You will also find the weekly timetable on the Virtual Village Hall website.

How do I catch up with sessions that i’ve missed?

You can catch up with all sessions by simply clicking the Live tab at the top of our Facebook page where you will find replays of all past live classes. You can also click on the Videos tab at the top of our Facebook page and you will find all our previous classes saved into playlists to help you search for a class you’ll enjoy. You can also watch classes on Virtual Village Hall website or on our YouTube channel: search Virtual Village Hall by Royal Voluntary Service.

How do I set reminders for classes?

Head to the VVH Facebook page, there is a list of upcoming live videos on the top left handside, click on the button under the video you want that says ‘Get Reminder’.

Do you need more tutors?

We are always looking for new and exciting activities for the Virtual Village Hall. We ask that tutors:

  • Are experienced in their field or are accomplished amateurs.
  • Have experience of delivering classes, sessions or workshops live on social media (preferable but not essential).
  • Are confident to present on camera and have a suitable location to broadcast from.
  • Have an upbeat, positive and engaging style and are happy to answer questions during the session.
  • Have a high quality laptop, PC, phone or tablet with a good quality camera and a strong wifi connection, and have experience of using this technology.

Tutors for exercise, dance and movement classes must have:

  • Public Liability and any other relevant insurances.
  • Access to royalty-free music, if using music (we cannot use licensed music on the Virtual Village Hall).
  • Experience of/the ability to adapt an activity for older people or people with limited mobility.

For tutor enquiries, please email virtualvillagehall@royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk

How do I access the page?

To find the page you simply type into the Facebook search ‘Virtual Village Hall’. When the page comes up, if you click ‘like’ and ‘follow’ the page you will regularly see updates in your news feed (if you have a personal Facebook profile) and will be able to easily access the page. Alternatively, you can access the page via our Virtual Village Hall website.

Do I need a Facebook account?

No you don’t need a Facebook account to watch our sessions. You can simply visit Facebook.com and type in ‘Virtual Village Hall’ in the search bar. However, to interact on the page with comments you will need to set up a personal Facebook account.

Can I connect with others?

Yes, the Virtual Village Hall is a very sociable place! You can post comments, questions and feedback for our tutors and other Virtual Villagers in Facebook comments during sessions.

How can I donate?

All our classes are FREE to watch and we will never ask for you to pay to view or interact with our Virtual Village Hall sessions, but donations to Royal Voluntary Service are appreciated. Text VVH to 70570 to donate £1 today or VVH5 to donate £5 or VVH10 to donate £10. Or donate online. Royal Voluntary Service receives 100% of your donation. Texts cost your donation amount + 1 standard message at your standard network rate. Always get the bill payer’s permission. UK networks only.

Are classes live?

Yes sessions are live-streamed daily on Facebook Live and there’s a library of previous sessions to catch up with on demand on our Facebook page, Virtual Village Hall website and YouTube.

Are there regular classes?

Yes, for people that like a regular commitment, we have a number of popular weekly sessions, including Yoga with Dave Rennie, Pilates with April Moon, Positive Posture with Jo Andrews and weekly arts & craft classes. There are also fortnightly classes including Zumba with Helen McGreary, Laughter Yoga with Tess Sanderson, Exercise with Sam Godfrey, British Sign Language with Anthony Sinclair and Beginners Spanish with Megan Haycock.

Are sessions only available on Facebook?

All sessions are available at Facebook where you can watch them live and catch up on demand. They are also available via the Virtual Village Hall website and YouTube.

Are the VVH tutors qualified in their field?

Virtual Village Hall tutors are experienced in their field or are accomplished amateurs. Our exercise, dance and movement tutors have the relevant qualifications and insurance in their field.

How do I suggest a new activity?

We are always looking for new and exciting activities for the Virtual Village Hall. If you would like to suggest a new activity, please email virtualvillagehall@royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk

Who do I contact if I have a complaint about the VVH?

If you would like to make a complaint about the Virtual Village Hall, please email virtualvillagehall@royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk

Terms & Conditions

Please note that by joining our Virtual Village Hall Facebook page, you will be subject to Facebook’s terms and privacy notice. We also encourage you to read our terms and conditions found on the Royal Voluntary Service Website Terms

Advice when taking part in exercise, dance and movement sessions

Please take care to ensure that your health and safety are a priority when taking part in these sessions and note that you are undertaking all exercise, dance, health and wellbeing sessions at your own risk. When taking part in any of these activities, please ensure that you:

  • Risk assess your area: make sure you have adequate space and clear any potential hazards.
  • Stay hydrated: drink water before, during and after a session and take it steady in hot weather.
  • Know your limits: only do what feels comfortable to your fitness level. Take breaks when needed.
  • Pre-existing health conditions: if you have a pre-existing health condition (for example: heart conditions, diabetes, back injuries, pregnant), please consider whether this programme is suitable for you. If in doubt, it may be best that you do not take part, or consult a doctor.
  • Age: stick to the level of activity you can manage. Make sure that any children are supervised atall times by an adult.
  • Wear comfortable clothing and footwear: wear comfortable clothing and appropriate footwearfor all exercise activities.
  • In case of an emergency: keep your mobile phone nearby.

To find out more about Virtual Village Hall and other online sessions, visit us at virtualvillagehall.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk.