About Student Volunteering Week
Across the country, universities, colleges, and charities will be taking part in Student Volunteering Week by celebrating the contribution student volunteers make to their local communities. It is also a chance for organisations to highlight how students can get involved with their work and what they will get out of it.
This year Student Volunteering week will take place from 10 – 16 February, and is run by the Student Volunteering Network, Student Hubs, and the National Union of Students.
Find out more about Student Volunteering Week.
How can you get involved with Student Volunteering Week?
Say thank you to your volunteers
It’s important to say thank you to anyone who gives up their time to support Healthwatch’s work. Events like International Volunteers Day and Student Volunteering Week provide the perfect opportunity to do this. For example, if you have a group of student volunteers, why not organise a social for them.
If you’re not sure of the best way to say thank you to your volunteers, have a look at the NCVO’s guidance.
Tell people how they can volunteer with you
It might seem obvious but research by the #iWill campaign showed that 35% of young people didn’t get involved with social action because they didn’t know how to, or because no-one asked them. To make sure it is clear how people can get involved you should:
- List the volunteer opportunities you have on your website and make sure they are easy to find.
- Regularly use your social media to advertise the volunteer roles you have available.
- Take information about volunteering opportunities with you to community events.
- Tell people who they should get in contact with if they are interested in volunteering.
Tell people the benefits of Student Volunteering
Whether you are at a university fair or writing a blog for your website, if you want to encourage more students to volunteer with you, it’s important to highlight what they will get out of it. For example, will getting involved with Healthwatch help them to make a positive contribution to their local community? Or improve their skills and wellbeing?
If you already have a student volunteer, why not ask them to explain why they volunteer with Healthwatch in a blog post for your website or in a short video for your social media. If you’ve not done this before, take a look at this blog written by Healthwatch Leeds volunteer Helen.
CharityComms has also produced a useful guide on how to tell people’s stories sensitively and to get the most out of them.
Contact your local university, college or school
During Student Volunteering Week, universities, colleges and schools are likely to put on fairs or events where local organisations can talk to students about volunteering opportunities. This is a great place to speak to students face-to-face about how they can get involved with Healthwatch.
Get in touch your local universities, colleges and schools to find out what’s happening in your area. You can also look for events happening across the country on the Student Volunteering Week website.
Use social media
To help you with your online communications, we’ve put together some messages you can use on social media.
- It’s #StudentVolunteeringWeek! Get in touch with us to start playing a vital role in helping people have their say about health and social care where you live [insert link to the volunteering page of your website].
- Was one of your New Year’s resolutions to get more involved with your local community? Why not improve local NHS services for everyone by volunteering with us! [insert link] #StudentVolunteeringWeek
- Doing good makes you feel good! Volunteer with Healthwatch to improve health services for your community and support your wellbeing at the same time [inset link] #StudentVolunteeringWeek
- Want to learn new skills or get experience for your CV? We might have the perfect volunteering role for you! Find how you can improve care for your community by volunteering with us [insert link] #StudentVolunteeringWeek
- We all love the NHS, but it can’t improve without our help. This #StudentVolunteeringWeek speak up to help make support better for you and your loved ones [insert link to feedback form].
- It’s #StudentVolunteeringWeek! Come and talk to us at [insert location e.g. local college] to find out how easy it is to improve health and care in your community [insert link].
- ‘[insert quote from a volunteer, e.g. I think that volunteering as a student is a really productive and positive thing to do.]’ Our student volunteer [inset name] explains why [x] #StudentVolunteeringWeek
- Don't forget to tag local universities, colleges, schools or volunteering organisations in your posts so they reach more people.
- Instagram is a great platform for events. If you're at a volunteering fair, use Instagram stories to showcase you're out talking to students.
- Keep an eye out for trending hashtags during the week you can use, like #MondayMotivation.
- Advertise specific volunteer opportunities if you have them.