Volunteering: How to get involved
Thinking about volunteering?
It may be helpful to consider:
- Why do you want to volunteer?
- What would you like to gain from volunteering?
- What experience and skills can you offer?
- What types of voluntary work would you be interested in/enjoy doing?
- How much time can you dedicate to volunteering?
- Would you like a regular commitment or one off project?
- Sheffield Volunteering at the University Students' Union offers volunteering opportunities in Sheffield and South Yorkshire for both students and staff:
- There is also a local volunteer centre in Sheffield, who offer advice and display local vacancies:
Alternatively, there are various online searches in which you are able to search for a type of project or all projects within a certain area or town:
- Do it volunteering made easy: www.do-it.org.uk/
- Volunteering England: www.volunteering.org.uk
- Charities Aid Foundation: www.cafonline.org
For all of the above websites, you can even put in times/days in which you are free to volunteer to produce results suited to your schedule, including weekend and evening options too (not just weekday standard working hours).
If you find something you’re interested in, you can apply online.
Top tips for choosing volunteering activities
- Choose something you will enjoy. You will get so much more out of the experience if you like the activity.
- Be realistic as to how much time you can allocate and consider how it may impact your work and home life. Pick something that suits your schedule.
- Read through the ‘task profile’ carefully to ensure you know what is expected of you.
- Don’t worry if you don’t have the required skills as on the job training is usually provided.
Insurance, Risk & Health and Safety
It is important that employees undertaking volunteering projects ensure that the projects are covered by the appropriate public/employers liability insurance and meet health and safety requirements.
Other ways to support voluntary organisations or charities
If you are unable to volunteer but would like to support local charities or voluntary organisations, you may wish to consider Give As You Earn.
The Give As You Earn scheme enables you to make tax-efficient donations to the charities of your choice direct from your salary. Employees can contribute a set amount each month which will be deducted from their monthly pay.
For more information see: www.shef.ac.uk/hr/reward/mybenefits/lifestyle/gaye