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Volunteering is brilliant! It’s fun, rewarding and makes you and other people feel fantastic. But don’t just take our word for it – join up and join in to find out for yourself!


As well as being a fun break from your studies and making a real difference to those you help, volunteering is a great opportunity to learn new skills, enhance your CV and make new friends – and it even helps towards the Skills Development Programme!



Check out our FAQs below if you’d like more information.


First you must sign-in onto the SUBU website then go HERE

There is a wide range of opportunities for volunteering in the local community, from operating CCTV for Dorset Police, to Conservation work at Arne, to helping the homeless, and so on. So click HERE to browse the opportunities and then click on any that interest you for full details

First you must register as a Volunteer, see above, then you browse the opportunities, and apply for any that interest you. Once you have done this, the charity will be advised that you would like to volunteer, and they will be in touch. If you don’t hear from them, simply drop an email to and they will follow it up for you.

A student recently told us that “I always find volunteering gives you something back. Whether it’s a feeling of doing something good or an opportunity to make new friends, it's always worthwhile.” Beyond this you gain useful skills, it looks good on your CV and some of our students go on to work for the charities that they have volunteered for.



Volunteering will only cost you your time. If you need help with transport, or gear, just contact us at as we have a stock of useful stuff from litter pickers to hard hats, and can also arrange for transport, from the BU minibus to the occasional taxi. There shouldn’t be any hidden costs, but if you find that there are, just let us know as soon as you can, and keep any receipts.

If you find that you can’t go, just get in touch with the relevant organisation as soon as you can to let them know, as there may be a volunteer on a waiting list who can take your place.

You can do as little or as much volunteering as you wish. There are also drop-in opportunities where you can just turn up if you have the time.

First you must add the activity where you did your volunteering here Once you have done this, simply click the + next to the activity, and this will bring up two sections where you can log you hours and log the skills involved

Yes, we are always looking to add genuine organisations to our hub. Just ask them to register as a charity here or contact us at

Once you have volunteered you need to make sure log your hours and skills. You can take part in the SUBU Bronze, Silver and Gold awards for completing set hours of volunteering. This record will be really useful for you to go back to when you are job hunting. We would also welcome any feedback from you, again, contact us at

Yes, the more the merrier! They just need to register as a volunteer and sign up for the same activity as you.

Make sure you are logged in to SUBU first, but if you are still having difficulties, please contact us at as all feedback about the site is very welcome

Yes, overseas volunteering is co-ordinated by the Student Opportunities Team. You can find more information about this HERE

You will need to register as a charity HERE, and once approved you can add your opportunities as they arise. When you add your volunteering opportunity you will see that there are prompts for required information, please complete all of the sections by clicking on the tabs at the top of the page. Don’t forget to add a start and end date, your contact details, and please include as much detail as you can in the email which will be sent out to volunteers that apply. You will be notified by way of an automatic email when a volunteer applies, but you will need to go in to that volunteering opportunity and click the green tick by the volunteer’s name to accept them. If you have any difficulties, please contact us at

Once you have added an activity, an email will go out to all Volunteers with interests relating to your charity to advise them of your new volunteering opportunity. You will be notified by way of an automatic email when a volunteer applies, but you will need to go in to that volunteering opportunity and click the green tick by the volunteer’s name to accept them, at which stage you will receive their contact details and will be able to get in touch with your volunteers. It would be helpful if you can give as much information as you can when you post the activity, and monitor the number of volunteers and remove the activity from the site once you have all of the volunteers that you need. If you have any difficulties, please contact us at

If you are a registered charity, or not for profit organisation offering local community action based opportunities, you can register on the hub and list your volunteering opportunities.

Some volunteering is on campus, some is where the charity is based, and some is out and about. Details are given for each volunteering opportunity. Do contact us if you need help regarding transport at

We are on the first floor of the SUBU building, Talbot Woods. Feel free to drop in on us for a chat about volunteering, or if you have any queries, whether you are a volunteer or local charity/organisation.

Please contact us at with any queries or questions that are not answered above, we are always happy to help!

Whilst SUBU primarily helps students find volunteering opportunities, SUBU and BU staff are also welcome to volunteer for anything that takes their fancy. Just register as a volunteer HERE to start the process. You will need to have signed in to SUBU first.

Volunteers give time, carrying out activities that aim to benefit community or society. Volunteers are unpaid and choose how they wish to give their time.  Volunteering is the volunteer's choice, volunteer roles are not the same as employee roles and volunteers are not a replacement for paid staff and are not covered by employment law.

Volunteering takes place in every sector from charities and not for profits to the public and private sector. The activities volunteers take part in are diverse, ranging from campaigning and fundraising to mentoring and befriending, running events and sports clubs to more formal roles like trusteeships.

Volunteers should, of course, be treated fairly and with respect. Partners on our hub are vetted to ensure that they are a genuine charity or non-profit organisation.  As a guide, any organisation asking you to volunteer should:

  • avoid language that suggests employment (for example, refer to a contract)
  • have separate processes for recruiting and supporting staff and volunteers
  • talk about what they would like from volunteers rather than saying they 'must’ or ‘have to’ do anything
  • not sanction volunteers for not meeting expectations
  • avoid perks that could look like payment (for example, training not needed for the role)
  • not ask volunteers to book or apply for holiday or time off
  • pay out-of-pocket expenses instead of a fixed amount.

If you have any questions about volunteering for organisations that are not listed on our hub, please contact us –