Meet the Part-Time Officers: Volunteering Officer

Harriet Page and Ollie Rowley, who share the role of Volunteering Officer, tell about how students can get involved with the local community

What exactly do you do?

harriet page and ollie rowley

Our main role as Volunteering Officers is to organise accessible and fun volunteering events for all students at York. We work closely with the YUSU Sabbs, as well as other Part Time Officers and the local community to organise a variety of different volunteering events throughout the academic year. These can range from events working with the environmental or with children or the elderly.

We also help to organise 14 different volunteering projects which run on a regular basis. There are five different categories for the volunteering projects which are: children & young people, adults & the elderly, disabled people, arts & cultural and environmental. You can get involved in as many of these projects as you want.

What was your most memorable Freshers’ Week experience?

Ollie: One of the best moments of Freshers’ Week was when there was free pizza in the Alcuin JCR. There was a lot of pizza, and not many people. That was a good day.
Harriet: One of my most enjoyable moments of Freshers’ Week was going round Freshers’ Fair and signing up to loads of different activities, and getting a years supply of pens and sweets! I think I’m still receiving all the emails from everything I signed up to!

Tell me about something unexpected that happened whilst you were volunteering.

We’ve learnt never to comment on the weather. We were facepainting at the Community Event ‘Celebrate York’ in May. It started to drizzle lightly, one of us commented “The weather couldn’t get any worse.” Low and behold, the heavens opened and Hull Road Park quickly turned into a lake. Note to all volunteers: the weather can always get worse. (Luckily pretty much all of our events for the next term are inside!)

What have you got planned for 2014/2015?

We have loads of great events coming up in the Autumn Term, including our brand new YUSU Volunteering Fair on 9 October, an eco-event at St Nicholas Fields and a tea party for local children.

What advice would you give to this year’s Freshers?

Get involved and stuck in. Whether it’s a sport, activity, society, RAG or volunteering. Loads of people will be in the same boat and new to it as well. You will make loads of friends and maybe find something you love at the same time!

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