Why should I volunteer?

Oxford Brookes students choose to volunteer for many reasons.

Browse our Volunteers Portal

Volunteering is a rewarding experience

  • Have fun - Try something new and take a break from your studies.
  • Meet new people - Grow your network and connect with like-minded people from different backgrounds. It’s also a great way to make new friends.
  • Get to know your local community - Burst the University bubble and explore different areas in Oxford!
  • Make a difference - Connect with a cause you care about and make a positive impact.
  • Increase your skills and gain work experience - Many charities offer training and references which can help you on your career path. You could receive a certificate for your volunteering. Email volunteering@brookes.ac.uk for more information.
  • Boost your wellbeing - Supporting a cause you care about makes a real difference to confidence and happiness.

“Research shows that 80% of employers value volunteering.”

Hear from students who have volunteered:

Ed’s experience at Lye Valley Nature Reserve

"Volunteering is something I often do as it not only helps others, but does make myself feel good too. I enjoyed getting outside and being amongst nature, rather than being glued to my laptop... It can help with your teamworking skills and gives you a first-hand view of the positives of a hard day’s work." - Ed

Eliose’s experience as a Kids Officer

"During my studies at University I volunteered for the Oxford Hub, a social action charity working in the local community. I was a 'Kids Officer', working with vulnerable young people experiencing learning difficulties and issues in their personal life. The intervention engaged 7-11 year olds in community activities, arts and crafts, fun days out bowling and visits to Oxford University colleges - to name a few. The social and cultural opportunities made available to these young people opened up their world to experiences they'd otherwise be closed from. I volunteered initially to enrich my University schedule, being totally unaware of how rewarding I was going to find it. The feeling of personal fulfillment by making such a difference to vulnerable, young lives is like no other! It has been the driving force for motivating my further career aspirations into the social sector - my want to support lives and give back to society". - Eloise

Eva’s experience as a Befriender

"I am volunteering as a phone buddy for people who may be feeling isolated due to the Covid-19 pandemic. I have regular calls with people and I always listen to them very carefully, making them feel heard, valued and understood. I understand that the pandemic has had a profound impact on people’s mental health and my aim is to help others as much as I can, helping them realise that they are never alone." - Eva

Emillie’s experience with Jacari

"I volunteer for Jacari, a charity which provides free one-to-one tutoring for disadvantaged migrant and refugee children, who have English as an Additional Language. I first volunteered for the charity because since moving to Oxford to study, participating in local charities was one way to give back to the community and provided an opportunity to meet new people. I have thoroughly enjoyed tutoring my pupil and helping them feel confident in their reading, writing, and speaking skills. It is also very rewarding seeing the progress they make weekly and knowing that you are making a difference to their lives. From my role as a tutor, I have also been able to join the Committee for the charity and have been able to take an active role in the organisation and provide training for new volunteers. This has been an exciting opportunity and has encouraged me to develop leadership skills which will be invaluable for the future, and I have also been able to work with the great, supportive team behind the organisation. We always need more volunteers so if you are interested, please visit the website: www.jacari.org/tutor and apply today!" - Emillie

What do charities say:

"Brookes students are some of the most caring and passionate individuals I have had the pleasure of working with. Without their continued support, PODTech would be unable to impact the amount of diverse clients and build digital capacity in the Oxfordshire community. The high level of skills a Brookes volunteer brings to our organisation is the reason these individuals are PODTechs first choice when it comes to identifying volunteers. Brookes continued support has enabled PODTech to reach more talented students at Brookes to increase digital capacity in our community.”

- Simon Brooker, Director & Founder of PODTech

Volunteering and your CV

Volunteering enhances your employability! It is a fantastic way to develop skills and gain hands-on experience, whilst giving you great insight into the world of work. Moreover, volunteering is valuable work experience. It makes your CV sparkle and helps you stand out from the crowd in a competitive job market. By connecting with a charitable cause, you demonstrate motivation and initiative - as well as developing vital skills, like communication and problem solving.

Volunteering gives you the opportunity to:

  • Apply skills developed in your studies in a practical way
  • Build confidence
  • Explore different areas of work
  • Gain transferable skills that employers are looking for
  • Grow your CV
  • Discover new skills

Skills you can gain from volunteering:

  • Communication
  • Team working
  • Prioritisation
  • Organisation
  • Leadership
  • Commercial Awareness
  • Problem solving
  • and many more!

So why not get involved and give your CV a boost?

Sign up to one of our Volunteering: How to stand out from the crowd workshops and find out how to add your volunteering to your CV, application forms and how to talk about it during interviews.

Careers is here to help!

Careers can support you articulating your experience in CVs, applications and interviews.