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University gives back over 13,500 hours through volunteering

15 June 2012

Students from Canterbury Christ Church University were celebrating the huge amount of time they spent volunteering in the local community last year at a special event for National Volunteers Week.

Students celebrate their volunteering achievements
Students celebrate their volunteering achievements

Age UK, Strode Park Foundation, HMP Canterbury, Victim Support and Catching Lives were just a handful of local organisations that benefited from over 13,500 hours of free time given by over 880 registered Christ Church student volunteers.

To celebrate the achievement of this year’s volunteers, and to kick off the start of National Volunteers Week (1-7 June), the University hosted a special presentation event, Tune into Volunteering, to recognise their student volunteers and celebrate the achievements of all volunteers in Canterbury.

Presenting the certificates to the students, the Sheriff and Vice-Chairman of the Council, Councillor Heather Taylor, said: “I personally want to thank you all for your volunteering efforts. Without your help and support our communities wouldn’t be what they are today.”

Also speaking at the event, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Professor Sue Piotrowski, said: “We are very proud indeed of our student volunteers and the massive contribution they make to local organisations. The University prides itself on being a community university so the huge amount of time given by our students really does help us enhance the work of Christ Church. We congratulate them on their achievements.”

Four students were specifically recognised for the volunteering they undertook and their attitude towards volunteering. These students were: Chloe Rooke, who volunteered at Canterbury Prison and as a fundraiser for Victim Support; Megan Forster, who volunteered at Catching Lives; Joe Mount who gave up his time at St Martin’s Mental Health Hospital and Age UK and Lip Vi Teoh who completed over 450 hours volunteering at Stroke Park Foundation in Canterbury.

Lip Vi Teoh, a final year Canterbury Christ Church student, said: “Volunteering has helped me develop as a person and by interacting with different people I have also improved my communication skills.

“There’s nothing better than seeing the people you are helping smile; you feel an indescribable joy. Every one of my friends and all the people I know who volunteer feel the same.”

Students are proud of the time they have given up to volunteer in their local community
Students are proud of the time they have given up to volunteer in their local community

Nancie Saw, a final year student studying English as a foreign language was recognised for the 350 hours she spent volunteering at the CLC bookshop in the city. She said: “I have loved volunteering during my degree. It has taught me so much, from social skills to gaining more confidence when talking to customers and I know I’m helping a good cause.

“I used to have an awful fear when I answered the phone as I was shy at the prospect of speaking English, but now I am a lot more confident. I hope to raise awareness of the fulfilment of volunteering when I return home to Malaysia as I have realised how easy it is to do and make people happy.” 

The Tune into Volunteering also rewarded over 40 volunteers from the Canterbury and Herne Bay Volunteer Centre where a host of local organisations benefit from people giving up their spare time. These organisations included: Kent Fire and Rescue Service, Apple Tree Children’s Centre, Canterbury and Herne Bay Shop Mobility, Epilepsy Here, as well as volunteers who assisted at the annual Canterbury Festival. All volunteers were congratulated and thanked for supporting their local communities and presented with certificates.

For more information about volunteering, visit: bit.ly/cccuvolunteer or visit www.canterburyvolunteering.org.uk

/Ends

Notes to Editor

Canterbury Christ Church University

Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services.

With nearly 20,000 students, and five campuses across Kent and Medway, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional subject areas.

  • We are the third highest university in England for graduates in employment, with 94.3% of our most recent UK undergraduates employed or in further study six months after completing their studies.
  • Christ Church is the number one choice for local people looking to study at university in Kent (2010 UCAS).
  • We are the South East’s largest provider of courses for public service careers (outside of London).
  • 2012 is the University’s Golden Jubilee, reflecting on 50 years of higher education and innovation.

*2009/10 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey

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