February has been a month of collaboration, with both university and local communities. Student Volunteering Week celebrated student social action, Give it a Go provided one-off opportunities in Winchester and the University of Bristol invited the Hub to join their City Challenges.
Student Volunteering Week
Mid-February is a busy time for Student Hubs as each of our teams celebrates Student Volunteering Week. In Bristol the team’s highlight was launching their new LinkAges project. The Phone Friends project pairs students with local residents at the Wellspring Settlement to share guidance on how to use mobile phones, and to connect people who wouldn’t otherwise have met.
In Southampton, the Hub collaborated with the Touch Network to tell stories about how student volunteering impacts lives. Our CEO, Simran Dhanjal, spoke at the event along with several amazing Southampton Hub volunteers. The team wrapped the week up with a sponsored walk raising money for Branch Up activity days in the city. A huge thank you to the committee and their donors who raised £290 in total for the project.
Finally, at Kingston Hub both the ‘Share the Love’ and ‘Art for Good’ (pictured below) stalls were a huge success. To share the love students designed and wrote 30 Valentines Day cards for local residents, to be circulated by the Hub’s partners at Kingston Advocacy Group. At the Art for Good session, 25 Illustration MA students donated their time and artwork to raise £120 for the Hub’s work.
Give it a Go
Winchester Hub’s Give it a Go programme gives students the opportunity to engage with their community on a one-off basis. This introduces them to the power of social action and empowers them to make change, even when their time is limited.
In February the team ran two Give it a Go events. At the start of the month, they organised a crafting afternoon at Matilda Place care home. Three volunteers enjoyed chatting, crafting and playing games with nine residents. They also organised a bird and hedgehog box building session. The volunteer Jasmine helped year 5 and 6 pupils at Winnall Primary School make boxes out of scrap wood. This event was hosted by Osborne Housing.
The University of Bristol invited Bristol Hub to join their City Challenges, a series of events which empower students to get creative and explore solutions to challenges local organisations are facing. The Hub Manager, Sorcha, gave an overview of the Hub and asked the students to think about fundraising. Specifically looking at external advertising sales, alumni donations and community events.
The students came up with loads of ideas, and an overview of how to make them happen. A highlight was one group discussing how we could celebrate our 15th birthday this year and coming up with a range of events from the ambitious (a ball!) to the bold (hot air balloon sales) to the social (collaborating with other societies on events).
In the Spotlight
This month we wanted to put our Southampton Hub President, Oana Lazar, in the spotlight. Oana was voted the 2021 IET scholar of the year thanks to her commitment to engineering. This includes her work with Southampton Hub supporting student leaders and the Invent Plus programme. Hear from Oana below.
“Southampton continues to inspire me, and inspires me to inspire others: during the pandemic I led an engineering outreach programme called ‘Invent Plus’, part of Southampton’s branch of Student Hubs, a national charity. We designed and sent 600 practical activity packs to 9 schools across the UK, introducing over 200 Year 9 schoolgirls to the wonders of electronics, and held virtual events to encourage more girls into STEM.”
What to Look Out For
- In case you missed it, we launched our 2020-21 impact report – celebrating the work of our students, communities and staff across the year
- We’re looking for fundraisers keen to take on an active challenge by joining our 15 for Student Hubs. Read more about the cause and how to get involved on our blog
- Our March webinars are all about employability. For students join us to learn more about Employability and Third Sector Jobs, for staff find out more about Supporting Volunteers to Articulate Employability Skills
- It’s your last chance to apply to become our next Bristol Projects Officer, delivering four student social action programmes in the city. Get your application in before end of day 27 Feb