Student Volunteering Week takes place this year from Monday 7th to Sunday 13th February.
Marking its 21st year, Student Volunteering Week celebrates student volunteering and encourages UK students of all ages to take part in acts of volunteering.
Student volunteering in the UK has a long history.
Some of its key moments and milestones include:
- The Student Christian Movement which was founded in 1893 which organised students to go and help the young, the poorly and imprisoned.
- The 1893 University Settlement Movement ran by volunteer students and graduates aimed to bring both working and middle class together through community action.
- The outbreak of WW1 and WW2 saw students fundraising for charities, supporting refugees and evacuated children, creating camouflage nets for troops and growing food for farmers.
- The acts of students during both wars triggered the birth of the Student Union and RAG societies that we have today.
- The 1960s saw a rise in student activism resulting in the Student Community Action movement.
- By the 1970s, campaigning, volunteering and fundraising had become main stay activities for student unions and societies.
Volunteering is a great activity to take part in and a great hobby to have.
Some of the benefits of volunteering include:
- The chance to try something new.
- An opportunity to meet new people and make new friends.
- A positive change from your day to day school/work routine.
- A chance to act and expand on current interests and passions.
- Improve your employability and career prospects by gaining experience and learning new skills.
- Increase self-confidence and that feel good feeling by making a positive difference to the community.
In order to find a volunteering position that’s enjoyable and beneficial to you, it is recommended that you spent some time doing research beforehand. Look into the local charities around you, what opportunities they’re offering and whether they align with your interests, goals and skills. The charities and opportunities that align with you are most likely to be the most rewarding and fun.
The best places to start your search and secure a volunteer role are :
- Having a walk around town and see which shops are hanging volunteer ad signs
If you’d like to see what volunteering students all over the country will be getting up to during the week, make sure to follow the Student Volunteering Week on Twitter and Instagram. Likewise, you can also join the Student Volunteering Network where you can connect with fellow student volunteers, gain access to resources and share ideas.