We understand that volunteering for the first time might be a daunting prospect, and that you may have a lot of questions that you’d like answered before you get stuck in. We’ve put together this list of things that you might find useful to know, so have a read through.
What does volunteering mean?
We define volunteering as an unpaid activity that involves doing something that aims to benefit the environment, the local community or someone (individuals or groups) through a charity or third sector organisation
Who can volunteer?
Anyone. All students, whether undergraduate or postgraduate, part-time or full-time, home or international, are more than welcome to get involved with one of the many charities we work with.
Whether it's a one-off opportunity or regular commitment, volunteering allows you to make a huge difference to other people's lives as well as your own. It can also improve your CV and employability skills.
How do I search for volunteering opportunities?
To volunteer, simply log into our website and browse our internal opportunities at the SU and our Worcester-wide providers for a variety of opportunities.
Am I Volunteering?
We define volunteering as an unpaid activity that involves spending time doing something that aims to benefit the environment, the local community or someone (individuals or groups) through a charity or third sector organisation. We do not consider it volunteering if the placement is a requirement of your course, or if it is for a for-profit organisation as this is considered an unpaid internship. Please also be aware that any down-time you have whilst volunteering, such as time spent sleeping, cannot be used on the V-Record (especially relevant to volunteering like Scout/Guide camps or residential trips). You can also view our guide here.
There are so many different opportunities - what should I do?
First and foremost, volunteering is about trying something new, and having some fun, so we recommend going for an opportunity that you think you’ll enjoy. Secondly, you can always look for something that might help you to gain the skills or experience for your future career.
Can I volunteer for more than one opportunity or project?
It’s completely up to you how little or how much time you give. We recommend that you start off with one opportunity or project so that you don’t overload yourself, but as long as you don’t take on so much that it’s detrimental to your degree, you can get involved with as many projects as you like.
I have registered my interest to a charity or organisation but they haven’t got back to me - what can I do about this?
Charities are contacted when a student registers their interest; from there they will get in touch with you as soon as they can. Our charities partners are often busy, so we ask that you allow two working weeks for them to respond to your enquiry. If you still haven’t heard back after this time has passed, please let us know and we can follow this up for you.
How do I log my volunteering hours to the V-Record?
Log in and go to your volunteer profile where you can set up your volunteering role and then log the activity and hours as and when you work.
You will be able to log:
• Community Hours
• SU Volunteering Hours Elected
• Volunteering Hours
What do these hours go towards?
When you volunteer for over 50 hours, it was go on your Higher Education Achievement Record (HEAR) and these hours can also be used on the Worcester Award.p>
Where does my data go?
Information on how we use your data as a member and as a volunteer of the Students’ Union can be found in our Student Data Privacy Notice at https://www.worcsu.com/faqs/data_protection/
I want to set up my own volunteering project - is that possible?
Yes – the SU is here to support you through starting your own Volunteering Project. You can find more information about starting your own here.
What is Micro-Volunteering?
Microvolunteering can be described as easy, no commitment, free to participate actions that can be completed in less than 30 minutes. They are mostly online based but there are some which can be done offline.
What about if I want to volunteer overseas?
The Students' Union does not currently advertise on behalf of any international volunteering organisations, as our priority is to encourage students to work to make a difference in the local community. Please see this document for further advice and guidance on finding safe opportunities.