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Make a Smile UCL
Welcome to Make a Smile!We believe that all children deserve a childhood and understand that illness or disability can make this very difficult for some children. Our goal is to help these children to enjoy their childhood. We endeavour to be professional, forward-thinking and well trained but hold at the forefront of our practice that fun is the number one priority for both children and…

Characters: Dress up as whatever character you wish/are comfortable with from our costume inventory and attend events to entertain young children at hospitals and specially-abled child care-homes etc.

Magic Makers: For those who wish to attend events but not in costume!


Imagineers: For those who do not wish to attend paediatric events but still want to be involved in such a noble cause!


Lead Volunteers: Check duties in details as follows ☺️☺️


Characters – Characters make the bulk of this project. They know which roles they suit and how to play them. They are expected to engage with the project by attending events, including socials and meetings. Characters will attend events in costume (provided) and will stay in character wherever possible around children. They will be responsible for interacting with the children and engaging with them, such as reading stories etc. Characters will get feedback following each event they do.

Magic Makers: For those who wish to attend events in clinical settings or children’s hospices etc. but not in any character costume but just as themselves. You will be tasked with being friendly with the children, talking to them, playing games and just entertain them in general - all part of a team and pre-planned.

Imagineers – Imagineers are volunteers that do not wish to attend paediatric events. Imagineers help with the organisation and running of the charity. It is the role of Imagineers to assist the committee with wardrobe organisation, arranging events, fundraising, recruitment, training, publicity and social media. Imagineers may not all have these responsibilities as the committee may choose to allocate a specific role per person. Imagineers should attend the mandatory training session to get a feel for how the project operates.

Lead Volunteers - Lead volunteers are volunteers that can be either Characters or Magic Makers that have completed 20 hours of volunteering and have been deemed competent by the committee. If they are deemed competent by committee, they are invited to complete Lead Volunteer training on the charity website, covering expectations and advice. Following satisfactory completion of this, they are deemed a Lead Volunteer. Lead volunteers fulfil the same role as other volunteers but have the opportunity to run events, including choosing volunteers, organising transport and looking after volunteers at events. There should be a lead volunteer at every event.

Who will the volunteers be working with?
Unwell children at paediatric wards of hospitals (when safe to visit if course)
Children’s Hospices
Centres for specially abled children

Basically bringing smiles to those children who unfortunately can’t make a smile for themselves!
1) Complete introduction training on Make A Smile website
2) Complete UCL SU Safeguarding training

That’s it - you’re ready to attend events!

Time commitment

Very flexible - once all your training has been completed, you can pick and choose which events you can go to from the available ones. Based on your university timetable and other commitments, you can choose to go to those events that are suitable for you in terms of timing. There is no mandatory rule about minimum number of events to attend - once trained, you do what you can!

This is an opportunity offered by a Student-Led Volunteering Project. It is run by UCL students and supported and supervised by staff in Students' Union UCL Volunteering Service.