Reasons to volunteer

Not sure if volunteering is for you? Let us tell you more.

You'll make a real difference when you volunteer – and it’s not just about what you can do for others. Volunteers get a lot out of the experience too.

The feel-great factor

Volunteering is about giving your time to a good cause. You don't get paid, but you do get the chance to use your talents, develop new skills and scope out your career pathway. And on top of that volunteering supports all 5 of the NHS’ ways to wellbeing. So you can make a real difference to your own life as well as the communities around you. 

Give your CV a boost

Employers value volunteering experience. A survey conducted by TimeBank and Reed.co.uk of 700 of the UK’s leading businesses showed that:

  • 73% of employers would employ a candidate with volunteer experience over one without
  • 94% believe that volunteering adds to skills
  • 58% say that voluntary work experience can often be more valuable than experience gained in paid employment.

"By carrying out voluntary work, I am able to gain an insight into various types of childcare and child services. It also looks great on your CV, so I would recommend volunteering to everyone, no matter what their interests!"

Jennifer, BA(Hons) Early Childhood, volunteered with Playbus

Jennifer, BA(Hons) Early Childhood volunteered with Playbus

Get into work

It’s a great way to get work experience and have proof of skills for you CV, portfolios and interviews. If you’re not sure which direction your degree will take you then why not try out a few options through volunteering - to get a taster of different professions. Volunteer Managers will often give you a reference but they can also open doors for you to meet people that will become your professional network.

Improve your confidence

You’ll learn and do things that you might not normally get the chance to. It'll make you feel good and is a real confidence booster.

Catherine's experience

Catherine, BSc (Hons) Nursing (Learning Disabilities), talks to us about taking part in Project Zulu and how it helped her gain confidence and transferable skills.

Improve your health

While you’re busy giving back to your community, you could also be getting healthier! Research has found that volunteering can do everything from helping you to sleep better to boosting your immune system.

Meet new people

Volunteering with people who are as passionate about a cause as you are is a great way to connect. It's likely you'll meet people from different cultures and backgrounds, uniting for a shared cause.

More reasons to volunteer

What you will get out of it

Whilst you’ll want to make a real difference when you volunteer, it’s not just about what you can do for others. Volunteers get a lot out of the experience too. At UWE Bristol Volunteering we believe that good volunteering is rewarding for everyone involved.

It could count towards your studies

Volunteering can be a great option for a short-term placement, work experience module or work-based learning. Read our placements information to find out if this is part of your course.

It's free

All of your out-of-pocket expenses, including travel, should be refunded by the organisation that you volunteer with, so make sure you ask them how to reclaim your expenses. If an organisation is unable to meet your expenses, then we can help. Contact the volunteering team to find out more.

Volunteering awards

The Ellucian Prize for the most Committed Volunteer 

Ellucian logo We are looking for students who have volunteered formally or informally in 2021. Maybe you supported local people in lockdown, or joined a charity to progress your career goals, we want to hear from you! Ellucian, a software provider that works with higher education institutions, are sponsoring a special award for UWE Bristol volunteers and the winner will receive £500.

Eligibility criteria

  • You must be a registered student in the academic year 2021/22
  • You must have taken part in volunteering either at UWE Bristol or in your local community in 2021.

How to apply

Applications open on Thursday 10 January 2022 and close on Sunday 13 February 2022. Fill in the application form. You can contact us if you need help with the form at volunteering@uwe.ac.uk.

Other awards

Other national awards that you could apply for include: