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or otherwise without prior written permission of the University of Glasgow
Students’ Representative Council, whose work is c 2009.
with the Student Volunteer Support Service

Introduction 4

Volunteer in Schools 5-8

Modern Languages; Mandarin Hub; Second Language, First Aid
Refugee Tutoring

Volunteer with Sports 9

Sports Coaching; Splash

Help the Elderly - Buddy a Granny 10

Nursing Homes and Sheltered Housing; Lunch Clubs

Help the Homeless 11

Help Refugees 12

Work with Students 13

Language Café

Nightline 14

Clubs and Societies 15-16

Student Volunteers Abroad (SVA); Student Action for Refugees
(STAR); Students for Kids International Project (SKIP)

Paid Summer Placements 17

Find a Solution

Q&A 18-19
Time; Experience; Commitment; Travelling; Disclosure

Contact Us 20
Introduction Student volunteering covers a large
range of activities and projects:
Getting a job after University isn’t there truly is something out there
easy. More and more employers are for everyone.
looking for graduates who have
been involved in student life beyond Why get involved? Good question.
their academic study. Where can you
Have a think about why you came
get this invaluable experience? Part-
to University in the first place.
time jobs are often hard to come by
and don’t always bear much relation • To get a degree?
to your career plans. It’s tough.
There must be more to it than that.
• To better your job prospects?
• To learn new skills?
“Volunteering isn’t • To meet new people?
just about the work • To have a laugh?
you do, but the
• To experience something different?
experience you have
in doing it. Being Volunteering with the SRC can help
you to do all of these and allow
involved has helped you to make a difference in your
me grow as a person, local community and build your
employability skills. Volunteering
meet new people, can also be a great way to escape
and develop skills I the ‘West End Bubble’ and see a
can apply to various different side of the city.

other areas of my
Samantha Ferguson
2nd year, English Literature

What about Volunteering?

“No thanks,” I hear you say, “I don’t
really fancy having to sift through
jumble in a charity shop.” But there’s
a lot more to it than that. Successful Find a Solution students
and the Chancellor Sir Kenneth Calman

Volunteer in Schools You may take part with no intention
of becoming a teacher. This is a great
As a volunteer, you’ll be heading along way to improve your interpersonal
to Primary, Secondary or Additional and communication skills (if you’ve
Support Needs schools to help the ever stood up in front of a classroom
pupils with lessons. You will not be full of teenagers, you’ll know what
expected to lead any classes (since we mean) and put what you’ve learnt
by law you can’t actually be left in into practice.
charge of a class) but you will work
with small groups of children or Modern Languages
on a one-to-one basis with them. The SRC is also able to give language
Whatever the subject – from English students and native speakers of
to Chemistry to Geography or Drama French, Spanish and German the
– we can (usually) help. chance to practice their skills in local
schools. As with the other subjects
Why get Involved? that students can volunteer with,
Many previous volunteers have you won’t be expected to teach a
found this to be a great way of whole class, but with many Glasgow
getting invaluable experience in schools now offering languages
the classroom before they apply for from P1 onwards, there is a great
teaching courses. The Faculty of deal that you can do to impart your
Education is very supportive of the knowledge.
scheme, and students are offered
the chance to attend an induction Whether you’re brushing up on the
session by students studying the four basics before your finals or want some
year BEd (Bachelor of Education) prep before a jaunt to France (or
course in the first and second Spain, Portugal...), this is a great way
semesters. of getting that additional practice.

Additional Support Needs “I enjoy volunteering
Glasgow has a large number of because it allows
highly specialist Additional Support
Needs (formerly known as Special
me to make lots of
Educational Needs) schools and new friends and
units that allow children and young helps to improve
people with a range of disabilities to
receive a high standard of education. the communication
The work that you’ll be doing as a between Chinese
volunteer will depend on the nature
of the school that you’re placed at, as
and UK culture”
the schools will be one of (amongst Ye Yang
others): MAcc

• MLDs - Primary & Secondary

Schools for pupils with Moderate
Learning Difficulties As with mainstream schools, you’ll
be working with the pupils in small
• CLDs - Schools for pupils with
groups or on a one-to-one basis.
Complex Learning Difficulties
The range of activities can vary from
• HVIs - Schools for pupils with assisting with English or Maths to
Hearing and Visual Impairment music therapy.

Mandarin Hub
If you’re a Chinese student at the
University of Glasgow, then the SRC
have teamed up with Hillhead High
School to give volunteers a chance
to work at the Mandarin Hub that is
being launched there. Working with
a Mandarin Teacher, you’ll be helping
with displays, dancing, language
classes and to launch events.

The aim of this is to help introduce Helping at Hillhead High’s Mandarin Hub
local school pupils to Chinese culture,
and who better than students from
that part of the world to pass on your Second Language, First Aid
knowledge and experience of the If you’re a Polish student at the
culture! University of Glasgow, then take
advantage of the SRC teaming up
, (-国1学0= with Glasgow University’s Polish
Society and schools across Glasgow
SRC  HILLHEAD to give volunteers a chance to help
学将会$  Polish children with their lessons and
offer Second Language, First Aid.
+会 Many schools have a large number of
Polish children whose first language
学-2汉语6师:= isn’t English, and as a result they
帮学0/=#/8;= sometimes struggle to keep up with
协6师语9课= the rest of the class. Volunteers from
Poland or Eastern Europe can help
举办5.动 to make sure that the children don’t
fall behind and can achieve their full
这项32'(为当 potential by ensuring that they’re
able to understand what’s being
学0绍国&= taught. Volunteers are also offered
 )将!为传%4识 the chance to help run after-school
and homework clubs at schools
经验2 7 across Glasgow which can be a real
"们* 2< benefit to local Polish communities.

Drugi język, pierwsza pomoc

Jesteś polskojęzycznym studentem
na University of Glasgow? Chciałbyś
zostać wolontariuszem?

SRC wraz z Glasgow University Polish
Society chciałyby zaproponować Ci
wyjątkową szanse pomagania polskim
dzieciom uczącym się w Glasgow.

Dzieci polskich imigrantów stanowią

dzisiaj znaczny procent uczniów w
Brytyjskich szkołach. Jednak, jako
że ich ojczystym językiem nie jest
angielski, często nie radzą sobie z
nauką tak dobrze jak ich rówieśnicy.
Właśnie wolontariusze tacy jak Ty
mogą pomóc im osiągnąć pełen
potencjał, ułatwiając im zrozumienie
nauczycieli oraz tematów zajęć.
Wolontariusze będą również Refugee Tutoring
mieć szanse prowadzenia zajęć Similar to the Second Language,
pozalekcyjnych w całym mieście. First Aid programme, there are also
Jeśli chcesz zrobić coś dla polskiej opportunities to help children from
społeczności w Glasgow, jest to refugee families with language
projekt dla Ciebie! barrier problems. In this project
you will be helping to make sure
that the children don’t fall behind
with their studies and that they
“I enjoy volunteering can achieve their full potential
by ensuring that they’re able to
because it allows me understand the teacher and what is
to make the most of being taught.
being at Uni and meet
lots of different people. Where and When?
It’s good to be able to We have links with over 25 schools
across Glasgow and Renfrew – from
focus on something Hillhead to Hampden and from
other than studies. Yoker to Yorkhill: there’s plenty
I can gain invaluable of scope to see a different side of
the city. We’ll ask you to commit
experience in many one morning or afternoon per
different areas.” week for ten weeks. If you want to
commit more time, many previous
Sarah Smith volunteers have been able to
2nd year, English Literature arrange a more regular placement
or get some experience in a range
of schools.

Volunteer All of this looks great on the CV, and
also helps if you’re thinking about
with Sports pursuing Sports Coaching or even
Teaching as a career.
With a significant emphasis being
placed on leading a healthy lifestyle
and helping young people engage Splash
in physical activity, there really isn’t ‘Splash’ offers you the chance to
a better time to start thinking about help out in swimming classes for
getting involved by volunteering children with additional support
in sport. And, with the Glasgow needs. As a Splash volunteer you do
Commonwealth Games in 2014 just not need any previous experience
around the corner, there are plenty or training other than being able
of opportunities available through to swim since you will be working
the SRC thanks to support from under the supervision of a qualified
Culture and Sport Glasgow. swimming coach. Volunteers are
offered an introductory session with
Sports Coaching a Disability Awareness Officer from
Culture and Sport Glasgow, who will
Open to all students, the scheme go over the basics of working with
allows you to get involved in a children with disabilities.
variety of Sports Clubs across the city.
Whatever your sport – Gymnastics,
Football, Hockey, even Table Tennis –
if you think that you can help young
“I met most of my friends
people get more active then there’s through volunteering.
something here for you. Even if you It’s been a defining part
don’t think that you’re really up
to a ‘coaching’ standard quite yet, of my University career.”
there are still plenty of opportunities
Chris Millar, 4th year, History
available, including helping out
trained coaches at sports clubs to run
their events or volunteering at one of
the numerous sporting events run in Where and When?
Glasgow during the year. As Splash is run during PE classes
organised through Additional Support
Once you’ve signed up to a volunteer Needs schools, then it takes place
programme, in addition to helping during school hours (9am to 3pm,
out in the sport of your choice Monday to Friday), and these can take
you’re also offered the chance to place at council-run pools across the
attend workshops on areas such City. The Sports Coaching programme
as Safeguarding and Protecting also takes place at council-run
Children; How to Coach Sport facilities across Glasgow, but you’re
Effectively; and Analysing Your able to volunteer with these in the
Coaching Action Plan. evenings or at weekends.

Help the Elderly Nursing Homes and
Sheltered Housing
– Buddy a Granny The SRC have developed a
If volunteering with kids isn’t your partnership with Bield Housing
thing then we also have a number Associations which gives you the
of roles available for working with chance to volunteer in a number
Glasgow’s elderly folk. These roles of roles with them, ranging from
range from helping out at lunch helping as a befriender in their
clubs to slightly more challenging Sheltered Housing complexes to
work in Dementia Units, so whatever helping out with Residential and
your reasons for getting involved Nursing Dementia homes.
there are plenty of opportunities
to offer a friendly ear and some
company to the residents, and to put Contact the Elderly
a smile on the faces of elderly people With the help of this local charity,
in the local community. students are able to visit residents in
their own homes: many residents are
housebound and you’ll be providing
them with some much needed

Lunch Clubs
You’ll be helping out at lunch clubs
that are organised by local community
groups in Hyndland on Wednesday
and Friday afternoons.

Forget Me Not
Help to put a smile on the faces of local residents This is for students looking for
something a bit more challenging
Of course, ‘helping the elderly’ is and who are able to visit someone in
a general phrase and you may be a care home or hospital and brighten
involved in a variety of activities their day. We’ve teamed up with
depending on what you choose Alzheimer Scotland to give students
to do. It’s worth noting that at no a five day training programme on
point will you be expected to care how to relate to the person rather
or look after any residents, as that’s than their illness and subsequent
the job of paid staff. You’ll be taking opportunities to put this training
part in activities that the care homes into practice. Staff are available at
run or helping with trips that they’ve all times to help support you.
arranged for their residents.

Help the Homeless “I spent two and a
Glasgow University Service to the half years volunteering
Homeless is a scheme that offers and I got some great
students the opportunity to help
homeless people living on the
transferable skills and
streets of Glasgow. With thousands made some friends
of people who are sleeping rough who I will always keep
or at risk of sleeping rough in the
city every year, you can really help to in touch with.”
make a difference in people’s lives Chris Hall
and help to provide an invaluable 4th year, Computing Science
service to them when they’re going
through a difficult time.

GUSH currently assists with the

Glasgow Simon Community Soup You’ll also be welcome to get
Kitchen in Glasgow city centre, involved in a more organisational
where you’ll provide food and hot role with this and with other events
drinks to the service users and have run by the Simon Community.
the opportunity to chat with them.
You’ll be offered training on best
practice and what to expect when Where and when?
you start volunteering, and all GUSH takes place on a Wednesday
volunteers are welcome to attend night in Glasgow City Centre, although
further vocational training courses you will only need to do one shift a
run by the Simon Community. month.

The particular participants in this
project are refugee and asylum
seeker medical professionals, and
need to attain a high level of English to
practice medicine in the UK. Although
the Doctors are aiming to register
to practice medicine in the UK,
conversation need not be medically
based - the only requirement for
volunteers is that they be enthusiastic
conversation partners. The aim is not
to teach anyone how to speak English,
but simply to engage in conversation
with them so that they can improve
their confidence, practice their
spoken language skills and perhaps
tutor them in areas that they may
be having problems with.

Where and when?

Help Refugees Meetings take place in a social
As well as refugee tutoring in schools, environment, such as the John
we also have The English for Doctors McIntyre Café, 1a The Square or the
scheme, which aims to increase Atrium Café, and you’ll be asked to
participant Doctors’ confidence in meet with the Doctors for two hours
conversational English. a week.

“Volunteering at University has given lots more skills

than can be taught in a classroom. I've met loads of
new friends too and the experience I've gained will be
invaluable in the future. In fact whenever I go for an
interview, the volunteering aspect is what usually gets
the company interested in what I've got. It has certainly
made me a better person with all the skills I've learned
and people I've met.”
Ciaran Owens, 4th year, Computing Science

“Volunteering is is also the possibility that this can
priceless because turn into language exchange as you
can get to learn a few words from
everyone gains from another language or get help with a
it. You can help others language you’re studying.
while learning new
Where and when?
skills you might not As with English for Doctors, meetings
get elsewhere.” take place in a social environment,
such as the John McIntyre Café, 1a
Gill Turnbull
The Square or the Atrium Café, and
you’ll be asked to meet with the
European Studies
International Student for an hour or
two each week.

Language Café
Work With Students As part of the Conversational English
programme, you’re also invited to
It may surprise you to hear that there come along to one of our Language
are also a number of volunteering Cafés. If you’re an International
opportunities right here on campus. Student looking for help with your
English, a Language Student looking
Conversational English for extra practice or just a native
Programme speaker wanting to learn more about
other cultures, we’re here to help.
Many international students at
the University of Glasgow require
support to help them improve their
English Language Skills. We’re
looking for student tutors who are
confident with their English to meet
with them for an hour or so every
week and chat over a coffee.

It has been shown that regular

practice with a native speaker is a
great way to increase participants’
confidence. The aim is not to teach
anyone how to speak English but The Language Café gives you the
simply to engage in conversation chance to be paired-up with other
with them so that they can practice students and get the help you’re
their spoken language skills. There looking for.

A confidential Information, Listening
and Email service, run by trained
students in conjunction with the
SRC, from 7pm to 7am each night
during term time. As a Nightline
volunteer you’ll be taking calls and
emails from other students, giving
them information and helping them getting some experience if you’re
through problems that they might thinking about a career in this area.
be having. Volunteers should be All volunteers are given training and
aware that Nightline is not an support on how to take calls and use
Advice or Counselling service, but active listening techniques.
the nature of the work that you’ll
be doing ensures that volunteering You are right for Nightline if:
for Nightline is a good way of
• you are a good listener
• are able to empathise with
other students
“There are so many • have an interest in voluntary
opportunities for work
volunteering at • enjoy meeting and working
Glasgow University. with new people
Helping out has • can work as part of a team
helped me to boost • can respect confidentiality
my confidence and and anonymity
encouraged me to get
Where and when?
much more involved Nightline is based in a self-contained
with University life University-owned flat, so it is a safe
in general.” and comfortable space to work from
and there is an opportunity to sleep,
James Harrison do Uni work or watch TV during
2nd year, Politics shifts, so it’s not like working in a
call centre. You’ll be asked to do one
shift per fortnight.

Clubs and Societies “Volunteering has
The SRC also has a number of projects been so much more
organised by student volunteers who than a couple of extra
develop and run their own schemes
with support from the SRC. lines on my CV. The
knowledge that you've
made a difference
feels like an amazing
Morven Boyd
5th year, French
Student Volunteers Spanish and Catalan
SVA offer university students
in Glasgow the opportunity to
get involved in community and
environmental work in developing They work with local organisations
countries during their summer break. on sustainable projects that help
to provide long-term assistance in
dealing with local issues ranging from
HIV/AIDS education and awareness in
South Africa to soil erosion in Nepal.
They aim to promote awareness
amongst students about the local
social, environmental and health
issues that affect the developing
world and to encourage cultural links
and exchange.

They also have further projects in

a wide range of other countries
including Cambodia, Malawi, India,
Ecuador and Senegal.

SVA offers opportunities around the world

“I didn’t realise I would Students for Kids
have so much fun International Projects
volunteering! I’ve met SKIP
some brilliant people,
and it’s made me really SKIP is a charity run by students,
working towards sending healthcare
think about teaching professional students from
as a career option.” Universities in the UK to work with
children in developing countries. SKIP
Joseph Rodgers Glasgow was set up in 2005, and is
2nd year, Engineering run by a twenty-member committee.

The Glasgow branch have recently

completed a feasibility study pilot
Student Action project in July 2006, which included
for Refugees visits to communities in urban and
STAR has a large and vibrant group rural Malawi, meetings with health
at Glasgow University. Their aim is to and government officials, and
help refugees in the UK and Glasgow collaborations with international
to rebuild their lives and to stop and local NGOs.
innocent & vulnerable people being
used as scapegoats because they In Malawi, they’re also involved with
can’t vote or fight back. They’ve got a Health Education and Promotion
several projects you can try: programme, participation in sports
and social events, a hand hygiene
• School workshops: fun & loud
programme and Play and Classroom
classroom role-plays showing
children in local schools what
being a refugee is like.
• Legal research: researching
specifics of human rights
situations abroad to help
inform specific asylum claims.
• Detention centre visiting: social/
emotional support for detainees
in Dungavel.
• Orientation: Helping newcomers
to adjust to and master the
simple aspects of life in Glasgow
that we take for granted, with
the Red Cross. SKIP volunteers in Malawi

Paid Summer Where and when?
Placements Find a Solution takes place during
the summer break, so you’ll be asked
to carry out the work from June to
“Paid work? But I thought
this was volunteering?”

While most volunteering isn’t paid,

the voluntary sector is a vibrant area
and a vital sector of the economy, so
we think you should get the chance
to experience working in it.

Find a Solution
Like many of the other projects on
offer at the SRC, Find a Solution gives
you the chance to give something
back to the local community whilst
at the same time gaining some Find a Solution students present their findings
invaluable work experience and
developing your transferable skills.
This particular scheme attempts to
tie in with your academic course, and
allows you to put the skills you’ve
“Volunteering can
learnt through academic study to be one of the most
good use. rewarding experiences
The project is funded by the
of your university life.
University of Glasgow Settlement It is hard work, but the
and involves students carrying out skills you pick up and
6-8 week placements during the
summer break. Previous projects have the experience you gain
seen students carrying out marketing are extremely useful - as
strategies, feasibility studies and
service evaluations for organisations
much as it is an activity
as diverse as the Glasgow Women’s that runs alongside your
Library and The National Theatre of degree, it can offer up
Scotland – all of which look great on
your CV (and for the bank balance, of serious career options
course). for when you graduate.”
James Porteous
3rd year, Product Design

Do I have the time Do I have to commit to
to volunteer? a project for the year?
This obviously depends on your other No. Most projects require a ten week
commitments, but you’re asked only commitment, but this can be worked
to give up 2-3 hours a week for most around your University timetable.
of the projects.

Do I need any previous Will I have to travel far?

Some of the placement opportunities
It can help, but isn’t essential. aren’t within walking distance of the
Obviously being able to swim would University, but don’t worry, as we’ll
be required if you’re looking to cover travel expense from all projects
volunteer with Splash, but the point (apart from SVA and SKIP – the
is really to help you GAIN some budget doesn’t quite stretch as far as
experience. South Africa or Malawi).

“It’s a great way
to feel part of the
I’ve been told that I need campus community
a Disclosure – what is this?
while boosting your
A Disclosure is something that some
volunteers and paid staff are asked
CV… not to mention
to complete in Scotland before they your social circle!”
work with a number of groups in
society, including children under the
Franck Martin
4th year, Politics
age of 18 or vulnerable adults. This
means that Disclosures are required
for the following projects:

• Buddy a Granny

• Classroom Support What else do I get

• Projects abroad with from taking part?
SVA and SKIP Other than a great sense of well-
• Splash being? The SRC is able to process
MV Awards – this is a national
• Sports Coaching scheme established by the Scottish
Government to recognise 16-25 year
A Disclosure is also known as a CRB olds who give up their free time to
check in England or a Police Check in help others. Having an MV award
many countries abroad. In Scotland on your CV will be recognised by
all it means is that volunteers are future employers and certificates are
screened to ensure that no one awarded for 50 (Bronze), 100 (Silver)
who is disqualified from working and 200 (Gold) hours of volunteering.
with children or vulnerable adults is The Gold awards are even signed by
allowed to do so. It is a very simple the First Minister.
process, as all you’ll have to do is
fill out a quick form. It doesn’t cost
you anything and no one (police, - Ok, I want to help!
authorities etc) will contact you What next?
about it.
Just visit the Student Volunteer
Support Service Office in the
John McIntyre building or email

To get involved or for more information, contact:

Student Volunteer Support Service (SVSS)

John McIntyre Building
University Avenue
Glasgow G12 8QQ
t: 0141 339 9541

t: 0141 353 1050 (7pm to 7am during term time)

For specific clubs and societies, contact:

SKIP Students for Kids International Projects (SKIP)


Student Action for Refugees (STAR)


Student Volunteers Abroad (SVA)