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Volunteering should be rewarding, stimulating and enjoyable - but it can also be challenging. Wherever you’re volunteering,you should have received a proper explanation of what you’ll be doing and told who’ll be supervising you. If this hasn’t happened, ask someone else on the project or get in touch with us at the Volunteering Service.

We expect the 400+ charities and not-for-profit organisations that we work with to provide current UCL students with a quality volunteering experience.  You can see what we expect from them on our recruiters page.

Alongside working closely with our partner organisations we’re here to support UCL students with their community volunteering - so again, if you need any help or guidance get in touch.

On this page you’ll find guidance and links to the following information:

Representing UCL and future career prospects
Telling others about your volunteering
Getting your travel reimbursed
Joining the Volunteering Society
Attending our Awards Ceremony
Adding community volunteering to your HEAR
Keeping well

We’ll be in touch when we find out you’re volunteering, a month into your placement and termly to check all’s good.  You’ll also receive our weekly newsletters and occasional emails about opportunities tied to your academic background and volunteering interests.

If you’d like to specify what we email you about you or tell us more about your volunteering experience please drop us a line, give us a call (02076797862) or pop into our office anytime between 9.30am - 5pm weekdays - we’re open throughout the year.


As a volunteer, you’ll be meeting people from different backgrounds and with different expectations. Some of them might see you as a representative of UCL, whether or not you want such a responsibility! Please bear in mind that what you do as a volunteer now may shape how students in future will be regarded.

Treat your volunteering as you would a paid role - and remember you can apply the skills you develop in your volunteer role in a professional capacity when you graduate.  Find out more about this on our volunteering and your career webpage.


Do you love the place you’re volunteering? Do they want to get other students involved? If so, let us know, as we’re always looking for volunteers to feature on our webpages - it’s a great way to recruit other students. We can also talk to you about other ways of getting the word out around UCL.  Check out the student stories we’ve had in so far this year.  You can also tweet us and link to us in your posts on Facebook and Instagram.


You should be paid travel expenses wherever you’re volunteering. We expect all the charities and not-for-profit organisations that we work with to cover your travel expenses (to and from your placement within TfL Zones 1-6).  If you’re with one of our student-led projects, then you can claim your expenses by visiting our office. More information on our expenses webpage.


If you’d like to connect with other UCL student volunteers, join the student-run Volunteering Society. Their slogan is ‘by students, for students’ - they organise socials and talks, put on one-off volunteering events, as well as offering social enterprise activities and their own longer term volunteering projects. To find out more about VolSoc, visit their website or email them directly.


Each year we hold an Awards Ceremony to celebrate our students’ achievements. We think it’s important that everyone is thanked for their efforts, so everyone is invited! There are also some special categories of award, and volunteers have the chance to put in a nomination for ‘UCL Volunteering Organisation of the Year’. More information about our Awards Ceremony can be found here.


For most UCL undergraduates, your volunteering can now be included on the HEAR (Higher Education Achievement Report) if you have completed at least 20 hours of community volunteering with one of our partners. The HEAR contains your academic record, but also includes extra-curricular activities such as volunteering. We will ask you if you would like your volunteering included in your record during Term Two.


Life as a student can present all sorts of stresses and strains, and so it’s important that you look after your own well-being and seek help if you’re having problems. There’s lots of help on campus - again, speak to us at any time, or visit the Student Support and Wellbeing web pages,