Volunteering abroad is an excellent opportunity to develop your personal skills and enhance your CV. Choosing your destination and what organisation to volunteer for is a huge decision and we are committed to ensuring your volunteer experience is the best it can be. We recognise the importance of volunteering and therefore want to ensure you feel confident in your decision and are aware that you are sufficiently supported during your time away by our University.
There are a multitude of opportunities available to our students to partake in volunteering projects. Currently we offer the opportunity to volunteer in a variety of places; from India to Poland, Sri Lanka to Israel and Fiji to Kenya. Our University supports a range of organisations around the world that enables you the irreplaceable opportunity to volunteer. To find a complete list of all the places you can volunteer, visit our international volunteering page here.
However if there is a place or organisation that our University doesn't offer, we are still committed for you to fulfil your opportunity to volunteer. The Independent International Volunteering Bursary is open to all students and offers the opportunity for additional funding toward your volunteering experience, wherever it may be.
Last year 53 students were awarded the Independent International Volunteering Bursary to allow them to participate in their own international volunteering projects. Two of those students were Melissa Blogg and Thom Dudley. Here Melissa and Thom offer insight on their experience volunteering in India with the 'Rainbow Voluntours' organisation:
"We both volunteered with 'Rainbow Voluntours' for two weeks partaking in the program 'Volunteer Teaching in India & Explore Kerala.'
"As soon as we arrived at our home stay, Niya Nest, we were served breakfast and welcomed to Fort Kochi by our host family. During our first two days we were taught all about the South Indian culture and introduced to teaching methods. We were very excited to get started with our project!
"Our first day of teaching was very moving; the children were very enthusiastic and eager to learn and the teachers were very welcoming and helped guide us through our lessons. We taught students aged five to 14, throughout the course of the day, at three different schools. Every school was very different from schools in the UK. They were very basic with little materials for learning, but the children were very happy and seemed to enjoy attending every day!
"When we were not teaching or planning our lessons we enjoyed our evenings in Fort Kochi. We experienced a variety of different activities such as a cycling tour to the backwaters! This was a great way to relax at the weekend.
"We thoroughly enjoyed our time in India. It is an experience we will never forget and we highly recommend volunteering with Rainbow Voluntours!"
Applications for Volunteering run throughout the year. The application deadline for the Independent International Volunteering Bursary is April, with bursaries awarded in May.