Student Volunteering Week 2020 takes place from February 10th – 16th.
We are privileged to have 14 wonderful students who are currently giving their time to volunteer in our centres. We’d like to take the opportunity to celebrate them and thank them for all their hard work!
Many of our students work with us as part of the University of Sussex Law School’s Clinical Legal Education programme, which we’ve been proud to be part of for several years. Through this programme, students are given the opportunity to train as advisers and work directly with clients, offering advice and information on issues including benefits, housing, employment, debt and much more. In turn they receive credits towards their course, and the experience they gain working in real advice situations, as well as the difference they make in the community, is invaluable.
Since this year’s students started with us just six months ago, they have already helped 406 clients with 692 issues, and our clients have given excellent feedback.
We’d like to introduce you to student volunteers Hannah and Rachel. Both joined our team in September 2019, alongside several other students, and they wanted to share their experience with you.
Rachel volunteers as an adviser in Crawley. She says of the experience so far:
‘To be a part of the Citizens Advice volunteering project has been very self-rewarding. I have enjoyed working with other volunteers as a team to reach effective outcomes for the clients but I have also enjoyed tackling more complex cases by myself and building a better rapport with old and new clients at the Citizens Advice centre.
Volunteering has also allowed me to apply the law into the perspective of everyday life situations and not just read from a book. This has further aided my interest and thought process on access to justice. Moreover, I have had the ability to further improve on my communication skills with clients. This will benefit me in the future pursuing a career in the legal sector.’
Hannah, volunteering in Horsham, says:
‘I’ve found it such a positive experience so far.
It really helps me to experience what I’ve learned on my course within a real-life setting, helping real people in the community. The training and support I’ve been given here has really helped with any nerves I felt at the start. The training covered absolutely everything, the support from the other volunteers here has been fantastic, and it’s been really flexible around my course.
I would really recommend to any students to spend a few hours each week volunteering alongside your studies. It gives you a better understanding of your community, and is a really worthwhile use of your time.’
To find out more about volunteering with us please click here, or send an email to our Volunteering team: firstname.lastname@example.org.