Volunteering and work experience can give you a real insight into the world of work. You'll build up valuable skills and experience, meet new people, and have an opportunity to make a difference to the lives of others. Here are some ways you can find work experience and to volunteer.
Volunteering with an organisation
To find volunteering opportunities with organisations, you can search online or ask your friends, family and teachers for suggestions.
Once you've found an organisation that interests you, contact them directly to see what they need help with and how much time they have available. You may also be able to visit their office or have a virtual meeting to give you a better understanding of the company. When applying for a role at an organisation, always be professional and follow all instructions carefully so as not to miss any deadlines!
Volunteering with a charity
If you're looking for a way to gain experience, make new friends and help those in need, volunteering with a charity could be the answer.
Many charities offer opportunities for young people to volunteer their time and skills. You can volunteer in your local community or abroad - whatever suits you best! Volunteering will give you valuable experience that employers are keen on seeing on your CV; it also improves confidence as well as being fun and rewarding.
Volunteering opportunities at universities and schools
If you're a student looking for volunteering or work experience, there are plenty of opportunities available at universities and schools. Many students take part in these programs in order to get hands-on experience before starting their careers, so it's definitely worth checking them out if this is something that interests you!
Work experience is a great way to gain insight into a job/company you want to work for. It can be used as a stepping-stone for finding your dream job and it's also a great way to improve your CV and boost your confidence.
Work experience might be paid or unpaid, depending on who you're doing it for. You could also ask them if there are any opportunities within their company available after completing your work experience placement - this might lead onto something permanent later down the line!
If there's a company you'd really like to join for work experience but it's too far to travel, ask the employer if you can do it virtually. It's become very popular, so it's always worth asking.
Volunteer schemes are offered by charities, voluntary organisations and government agencies. They can be short or long-term depending on what you're looking for.
Some examples include:
Local volunteering and work experience programmes
Another option is asking around in your local area. It can sometimes be easier to be given an opportunity by smaller organisations. You can make a list of places you’d like to do work experience or volunteer at, and then do some research to check if it's a good fit for you.
Volunteering and work experience websites
Here are some helpful websites if you are looking for work experience or to volunteer:
There are lots of opportunities to find volunteering and work experience. You can find them on our website, in your local area and there are also many websites that will help you find what you’re looking for.
If you're still struggling, don't worry! There are plenty of options out there, so don’t give up. Whatever route you take, remember that it's important not just to find something that interests you but also fits in with your schedule - because if it doesn't work out then there's no point wasting time on something which isn't right for either party involved!