How volunteering can transform your university experience

Volunteering in your local community connects you with others and creates positive change.

Over the past academic year, the team at Bristol Hub have supported over 180 Bristol students to engage in social action.

Bristol Hub manager Sorcha Young shares the impact that volunteering can have:

Bristol Hub students volunteering

“Social action takes many forms. It can range from donating money to good causes to creating campaigns or running community-based events. I love making a change by getting hands-on and volunteering in my community.”

Niamh Harrington, Bristol Hub one-off Volunteering Coordinator 

How volunteering enhances wellbeing 

85% of Bristol Hub’s student volunteers agreed that participation enhanced their well-being during university. Where there are many challenges to university, such as loneliness, academic pressures and an overwhelming amount to do, volunteering provides a space to escape and connect.

“I am a PhD student, which gets lonely sometimes. It was good to be a part of a team, work together, and make friends. I think it really impacted positively on my social wellbeing.” – Social Innovation Programme volunteer 

“I was struggling to find a feeling of worth at uni and studying for my course didn’t give me a feeling of making a difference. This activity helped me find that purpose.” Climate Action Bristol volunteer 

How volunteering enhances academic experience 

Some of you may think that volunteering takes away from your academic time and development, but I am here to tell you quite the opposite! 50% of our volunteers agreed that their participation with us actively increased their engagement with their university courses. 

“I found that participating in volunteering had a positive impact on my mental health and made me more motivated to attend university as it increased my mood. I think the benefits of volunteering on my mental health definitely increased my engagement in my university course.”LinkAges volunteer 

 “This activity is highly relevant to my Consumption, Environment and Sustainable Development course. It encourages my passion for my degree because I could apply the knowledge I learnt from my course to this practical activity.” Climate Action Bristol volunteer 

How volunteering connects you to your community 

Hub student volunteering socialising together

You are in a new city, sometimes even a new country, and trying to build new friendship groups – and sometimes it is isolating. 98% of our student volunteers agreed they met people they otherwise wouldn’t have met and 70% felt they built a sense of belonging to their local community. 

Overall, volunteering is a space for you and your community to grow and learn together. At Bristol Hub we want Bristol to be the best space for all and volunteers are fundamental to making that happen!  

Interested in volunteering next year?

Check out the Bristol Hub volunteering opportunities or look through Bristol Student Union groups and external opportunities! Got questions? Pop us an email at