5 reasons you should volunteer this year

Let this be the year that you get involved with volunteering! The benefits of volunteering are huge – not only for those that you support, but for you as a volunteer.

Volunteering is a great way of meeting new people, discovering more about the city you live in and gaining unique and exciting experiences that can help shape your life and career. 

So why not give volunteering a go, explore your interests and make the most of your time at York? Many volunteering roles are flexible with varying levels of commitment, making it perfect for fitting in around your existing schedule. 

There are lots of reasons why you should volunteer, here’s our top 5 reasons:

1. Meet new people and build your networks 

Volunteering is a great way to meet a diverse range of people who you may not have met otherwise. From hearing interesting stories from the people that you are supporting, to working alongside a team of volunteers towards a shared goal, volunteering is a brilliant way to connect with others!

Volunteering can also expand your networks. By volunteering in a sector that you care about, you create an opportunity to build strong relationships that may help you to gain a job in the future.

2. Explore your local community 

Whether you are new to York this year, or an already established York resident, volunteering is the perfect opportunity to learn more about where you live. This could be helping to improve green spaces, supporting someone in need, assisting teachers in a school, or taking advantage of York’s rich heritage and volunteering at one of York’s Historic landmarks. However you volunteer, this is a great way to discover new areas of the city.

3. Learn new skills and advance your career 

Becoming a volunteer is a fantastic way to gain valuable experience, allowing you to develop key skills to enhance your CV and help you stand out to future employers.

Voluntary experience can provide you with really good examples of work experience that employers will be interested in talking to you about.Through volunteering you can demonstrate your passion for a particular subject or cause, or show your drive to give back to others. 

Volunteering can also help you to build on a variety of skills including; organisational skills, time management, effective communication, as well as building your confidence. 

Better yet, some volunteering placements give you access to vocational training in specialist areas such as safeguarding children, project management and event planning, all of which are great examples to use at interviews.

4. Give back to your local community

Volunteering enables you to play an active role in your local community and contribute to positive social change. Organisations really value the time that volunteers give, as it enables them to carry out important tasks that they might not otherwise be able to do and help them to reach a wider audience. Through volunteering you can make a huge difference to the cause or the people that you are supporting. 

Whether you are volunteering in sustainability or giving your time to improve another person’s wellbeing, volunteering allows you to connect to your local community and make the world a better place.

5. Enhance your wellbeing

Finally, not only is volunteering a great way to help others, but it has also been proven to be just as beneficial for your own sense of wellbeing.

Seeing the impact you can have on others or towards a cause that you care about is a really good way to boost your overall happiness. Volunteering can be extremely fulfilling and can lead to increased levels of self-confidence and self-esteem. 

Volunteering also provides the opportunity to participate in something which takes you outside of your day-to-day life. Whether this is a break from your studies, socialising with new people, or getting outside, volunteering can stimulate your mind, take your mind off stress and in many cases, enable you to do something fun! 


So what are you waiting for? Visit Handshake for a full list of our current opportunities, or sign up to our volunteering mailing list to keep up to date on how you can get involved.

However you wish to volunteer, The Volunteering Team is here to help!