Here are some of the recent activities that students at City University London are leading. Learn more about what City Volunteering is doing to support City Students in designing their own community engagement projects here
Valentines' Day Concert at St. Luke's Centre
Students from Cass decided to help target isolation amongst older people in the borough by organising and running a Valentine's Day Concert for attendees of their lunch club. They led the old people in singing a mixture of traditional songs along with pop (ranging from Abba to Frank Sinatra!), a performance on zheng (a stringed instrument) and a traditional Chinese love story.
"The thought, preparation and consideration given by the organisers ensure this project was an overwhelming success. The energy created by the students was particularly impressive. The quality of the concert was excellent and all the students engaged with the older residents. Giving Valentine's Day presents to participants as they left was really appreciated." Keren Wiltshire, Director, St. Luke's Community Centre
Childrens' Party at the Baytree Centre
The Baytree Centre in South London provides education, training and personal and social development for women and girls. Students from Cass Business School helped ensure that their 2011 Christmas party was memorable, providing face-painting and gifts for the young people.
Staff at the centre were delighted to have their involvement:
"The students, through their innovation, organisation and friendly manner brought an added dimension to this end-of-term party which had been run many times before but never with prizes and face-painting. The children were thrilled with the event this year and didn't want it to end."
Edward Lee, who led on this project said:
"Our project was quite successful as we were able to donate in kind to a center that is set up specially for young girls who are less privileged. Our main objective was to enable these kids to enjoy the Christmas spirit with friends and give back to the community. The administrators were very appreciative of all our help and donations. The girls were most fascinated by one of our volunteers who had dressed up as a clown and even more impressed when they found out that we were face painting for free!"
Ellen, a volunteer, felt that she had most developed her skills in delegation, planning and problem solving. She said:
"When there was just one face-paint pad for drawing regular shapes, I decided to let Sabeen be in charge of drawing regular shapes while I drew freestyle with a theme. Then children with different preferences knew who to go to, and the queue was eased by our good delegation."
Reflecting on the event, the staff at Baytree said:
"Small touches make a big difference to us - if we know in advance that we can offer the girls these extra treats, this acts as a draw and helps us to boost our attendance, which in turn helps to secure funding. Your help was much appreciated by all and we would love if you could help us again! Thank you!!!"
Our Story Islington
A local oral history project, sourcing people's stories about the area. They hope to help develop the art of storytelling, bringing people together through their shared geographical location. Student leader Nico and his team applied for funding through the Community Leadership Programme, which enabled them to buy their web domain and hosting. Borrowing audio equipment from the university allowed them to minimise their costs. They launched the project through running a Family History Day at Islington Museum.
Alison Lister of Islington Museum said:
The project was extremely well thought through. Islington Museum's staff and volunteers found the project of interest and a great community idea. The positive future applications of this project could be huge.
Their project management coach from UBS, Joppe Schepers said:
I really enjoyed being able to help others, both directly and indirectly, through sharing my career experience.
Nico Wilson, the student project manager said:
I most enjoyed the collaboration process with the team. Our team included a wide range of academic backgrounds, including Human Rights, Social Research Methods, Computer Engineering, Library Science and Journalism. As a result, team members were able to effectively apply their area of expertise to particular parts of the project
Undergraduate Pro Bono
UG Pro Bono gives students the opportunity to participate in a project which educates members of the local community about the law, democracy and human rights, delivering knowledge to citizens who would not otherwise have access to legal education. Law students work in groups to actively provide local people with a basic education of the Law.
The students give presentations or act out scenarios with youth groups, primary school children or secondary school teenagers, aged between 13 and 18 years, focusing on subjects such as employment, gun crime, and housing benefits.
UG Pro Bono Students
Watch the students explain the project
This project will give children a better awareness of the Law and help them to understand any interactions their family may have with the legal system. It will also help to give a more positive approach to law in relation to the community. Law students will not be giving any legal advise to children or adults, but instead will be providing vital education about the law.
READ Book Project
Read International, through a community of student-run READ Book Projects, mobilise university students to collect disused, high-quality Key Stage 3 and GCSE textbooks from UK secondary schools. The student volunteers give presentations to schools pupils to promote student volunteering, young social enterprise, recycling and global citizenship.
To date, READ Book Projects have donated 148,000 textbooks to 140 Tanzanian secondary schools and five regional libraries. The books will be used in the daily education of children working towards their Key Stage 3 and GCSE equivalent exams.
For more information about the project see their video clip on YouTube:
Through participation you will
- meet new people from across the university
- learn a range of project management skills
- get involved in fundraising for the project
- recruit student volunteers from amongst your peers
- interact with schools and policy makers from across London
- access professional support at all stages through the university and Read International
Student Led Volunteering is supported by generous donations from alumni
and friends through the City Future Fund
. It is only with these donations that the scheme is able to continue. To find out more about how the City Future Fund is helping students across City University London, click here