Monday, 11 April 2011

March one-off volunteering update

KUBAG Volunteers survey their hard work!

Another busy month for KUSU volunteers getting involved with our one-off volunteering opportunities

First up three volunteers helped with a Cancer Research Fun day. They took off round Kingston town centre to sell pin badges and raise money for this great charity. 

On the same weekend Kingston University Biodiversity Action Group took a tour of campus to sow wild flower meadows.Taking in Kingston Hill, Middle Mill Halls and Penrhyn Road the wildflowers will not only brighten things up they will provide insects, birds and small mammals a vital place to shelter and find food.

You can read a full report of the day and find out what else KUBAG get up to by checking out their blog here.

Sopwith Blossom by Paige Sinkler
KUSU Volunteers have been involved with the Paint the Town Green festival which saw lots of exciting green events take place. Kingston Students were involved in organising the Green Shoots Photography Competition which invited entrants from across Kingston. All 43 entries were on display for a week in Market House in the centre of Kingston including University Biodiversity Category winner Paige Sinkler. A KUSU volunteer helped make this possible by stepping up to answer visitor’s questions and supervise the exhibition.

Finally at the end of the month 5 volunteers went to help at a Refugee Action Kingston clothing day. RAK provides support and advice to refugees and asylum seekers in the local area. On clothing days RAK distribute clothing, toys and other items to those most in need. KUSU volunteers got involved helping out sorting donations, setting up the venue, greeting those attending and distributing the items. Eleni who volunteered on the day reported back that ‘Volunteering at Refugee action Kingston was one of the best experiences in my life. All the volunteers there were very friendly. I was involved in the toy section and it was amazing being with the children!! You should have seen the smile on their faces :)’

Its great to hear the toys went down well because some of those were donated by staff and students at Kingston University. Just before Christmas we organised a toy collection on behalf of RAK and Chase Childrens Hospice. We were thrilled with the response! Donations were split with the first half being delivered to Chase by Societies Coordinator Gemma in time for Christmas and the RAK ones being delivered on the Clothing Day by KUSU General Manager Mark. Big thanks to everyone who made a donation and to Gemma and Mark for making the deliveries.

Monday, 4 April 2011

What's it like volunteering for Nightline?

London Nightline is a confidential listening, support and practical information service for students in London. You can literally talk to them about anything from a good taxi firm late on a Friday night to the moments when all those deadlines just get a bit much. 

They are open between 6pm to 8am every night of term and there are loads of ways to get in contact. You can call on 0207 631 0101, email them, chat via Skype (search for londonnightline) or instant message them through the website. This amazing service is made possible because of student volunteers. 

The best way to find out what it’s like being a Nightline volunteer is to hear from one directly. However this KUSU Volunteer report is slightly different as Nightline volunteers are anonymous! However we didn’t think that should stop them getting the opportunity to shout about the great work they get up to so here’s a little insight…

I’m a third year Kingston student and I volunteer for London Nightline. Nightline is a confidential listening and support service for students, run by trained students. People call Nightline for various reasons. They may call to talk about their problems, or simply to chat about how they are feeling.

Joining Nightline is one of the best decisions I made while studying at Kingston. Through training and being on the line, I learnt so many skills that will remain useful for the rest of my life.

It was also great getting to meet fellow volunteers,  many unique people from universities across London. There are students from various backgrounds studying different courses, but we all have one thing in common – which is passion for helping others. There is also a co-ordinator who is very supportive so you never feel alone.  Fun activities such as trips and night outs are organized for the volunteers on regular basis, which helps you socialise and establish a bond with other volunteers. 

If you have a desire to volunteer and help fellow students – you might enjoy and learn from joining Nightline. I personally feel that I have progressed and grown so much stronger as an individual through having the opportunity to be a part of such a fantastic organisation.

Sounds pretty good I’d say! Applications to volunteer are currently closed but they’ll be recruiting again in October. Keep an eye on our Facebook page and mailing list if you’re interested and we’ll let you know all the details and how you can apply.
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