Volunteer Spotlight

 

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I first started volunteering in my first year at university by helping out with union events. From doing this I became extremely engaged in the union. So much so I applied to be Head Contact in my second year which was a great experience. I made many friends and it was rewarding to help Freshers settle into university life as when I was a Fresher I found it difficult to immerse myself until I started volunteering.

 

I volunteered in an elderly home and I’ve volunteered as an union representative. I volunteered because I really believe it’s a great way to help others but to also learn and develop yourself. I became Volunteering Chair 13-14 during my time at university and I absolutely loved it.

 

Simply from doing one simple volunteering activity I’ve managed to develop and grow as a person so much so I’m leaving for a ten week placement to Cape Town to volunteer in a local community with International Citizens Service.

 
Jemima Khalli – Past Brunel University Volunteer and Former Volunteer Chair
 
 
 
 
 

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I got into volunteering quite late (in my 3rd year), but when I did I threw myself in full force. I sorely wished I had got more actively involved in volunteering earlier because of the amazing people I met along the way, the valuable working skills I learnt and the opportunities these roles ultimately led up to. It was always a fun experience, and so worthwhile.

In my 3rd year I volunteered extensively with UBS; with RAG, at Freshers Week, One World Week and FACE Week, but also with the Youth Offending Service, Childreach International and at Brunel Volunteers events.

I attribute volunteering, and the fantastic work of the Brunel Volunteers team, as being the only reason why I have developed a transferable working skill set which is proving invaluable since starting and nearly completing my MA. Thank you Brunel Volunteers.”

 
Lisa Boyles – Past Brunel University Volunteer and Brunel Volunteer of the Year 2013
 
 
 
 
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I initially started volunteering towards the end of my 1st year by helping out with union events in FACE Week. That pushed me to engage more with the union and find further opportunities.

In my 2nd year I decided to get involved right from the start, so I didn’t miss out on any events.  I was not only extensively involved with the union events, Freshers Week, One World Week and FACE Week, but also volunteered at Brunel Volunteers events e.g. Good Deed Day, Boat Painting, St Patrick’s Day Celebrations, and Student Volunteering Week.

Volunteering has thought me valuable people skills; I’ve met great people along the way and it has changed me as an individual. Ultimately I can say it’s a worthwhile experience.

Brunel Volunteers have provided me with the opportunity to volunteer for the Royal Voluntary Service, which I am absolutely enjoying right now. I’ve also volunteered as a union representative for 2013/14 and I am now the Volunteer Chair for 2014/15.

Sonia Bhangu – Brunel University Volunteer and current Volunteer Chair 2014/15
 
 
 
 
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I started volunteering January 2014 because I wanted to contribute and give back to the community without getting anything in return. My little way of putting a smile on everyone’s face and making someone out there happy.

I still currently volunteer at Oxfam Uxbridge and the University. It has helped me develop great working skills and also adjust to the different behavioural attributes of people

 
George Ojiako – Current Brunel University Volunteer
 
 
 
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 Volunteering is probably the best way you can meet people and make them smile, share your thoughts and solving others problems at the same time.

My three best experiences include the fireworks event, testing of the brand new Terminal 2 at Heathrow and the open days of the brand new Heathrow UTC College.

For the fireworks event, where I was lucky to be part of it for two years, I had the chance to meet a lot of people (most of them are good friends of mine now) and also deal with situations under pressure (especially on the day of event) which required my own critical thinking for their solutions.

Testing the new Terminal 2 at Heathrow was a fascinating experience. I realized that an airport cannot really operate on its own but a lot of planning and preparation should take place before its official open day. This gave me a chance to walk around the departures level, pretending to be a passenger with different profiles (some of them required me to be a demanding one which was so funny) and hence give my feedback for the development of the systems.

Last but not least, the manager of the new UTC Heathrow College opening in September 2014 sponsored me to a trip to Bristol where I had the chance to have training, with two of my classmates, on a Rolls-Royce structure for the future open days. On the actual open days, I and my classmates were interacting with the prospect students making them to understand how planes operate in real life.

Through Brunel University Volunteers I learned how to be more self-confident and also how to operate with other people in the same environment.

 

George Pischinas – Current Brunel University Volunteer
 
 
 
 
 
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Volunteering which gave me a new life experience and I am still addicted to it. But till now I can’t find where it all started and how it got attached to my life.

In my diploma I and my friends use to work for our college conducting events as well as doing hospitality services. But it doesn’t make me any different from anyone else. It was just a dedication to my college. I was doing this for more than 1 year in my diploma course.

In India we have volunteering, but is unreachable, we worked under a club called Rotract club of Chennai which is similar to volunteering, but it is a big circle. So I never showed much interest in that club. Every year I use to donate blood for cancer institute.

After my diploma, I pursued my bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. Here I took initiative for doing hospitality services like organising events, transport, foods etc. but I never felt any difficulties or boring while doing this tasks.

I am very disappointed and worried that I can’t work anymore at Brunel volunteer and continue my service to Brunel.

I have a small motto in volunteering: don’t count or fix a mark for how much volunteering you do. Because personally my compliments or feedback is when you volunteer make sure that every single person must get benefited or satisfied with our work. That is the biggest award forever and I have experienced by seeing them face smile. Each smile gives you different feeling.

Good luck for the next academic year volunteers hopefully our success continues!!!

Thanks for this wonderful opportunity.

 

 Prashanth Balachandriane – Current Brunel University Volunteer
 
 
 
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Initially, I wasn’t sure if I’d find time to volunteer as my course is quite intense with assignments and placements. I also wanted to fit in paid work to help fund my studies.

However, I found opportunities through Brunel Volunteers that were not only flexible, but that were relevant to my career and were fun. I’ve gained skills and experience that will significantly help my employability when I graduate. Since my volunteering experience in first year, I’ve made it a priority every year and I wouldn’t be without it now. The annual Brunel Volunteer Award ceremony is a fantastic event – a much appreciated reward for the work we put in.

I absolutely love volunteering, it’s been one of the highlights of my time at Brunel.

Frances Danylec – Current Brunel University Volunteer.

 

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I first started volunteering within four days of being at university as I found it was a great way to get to know the area and the community I was becoming part of.

Since then I have become part of a mentoring scheme and volunteer on a weekly basis at a local school, helping A level students develop their mathematics. I also have volunteering roles as part of many different events running on campus, whilst forming a Marrow Group for Brunel, of which I am the Treasurer and Volunteer Co-ordinator.

I have always loved volunteering and knew I wanted to get involved as much as possible once I got to university. I like to be busy, out there in the world, experiencing new things and for me, volunteering is the best way to do that; I get to give something back at the same time.

Jessica Morris – Current Brunel University Volunteer.

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