With SCA, you can get involved in a number of student-led projects with adults. They’re a great way to interact with other generations and people from different backgrounds: they can offer lasting friendships and valuable life experience.
Computers & Tea
On Saturday mornings, we run basic computer classes for the elderly. The sessions are held at the Clayport Library in the centre of Durham, and have included one-to-one help with e-mails, online shopping, Microsoft Works and Googling. The project has proven to be a great way to strengthen relationships across generations, and offers a relaxed and friendly environment in which to contribute to the community.
Where? Durham Clayport Library
When? Saturday mornings
Contact Katharine and Ee Ling at email@example.com
We walk dogs for residents who are elderly, ill, or those who have time constraints. Volunteers will walk dogs once a week, and can request which size dog they would like and their preferred day and time. We recommend getting involved as it’s a great way to get to know parts of Durham that you might not normally see, and a really nice break from work!
Where? Various locations around Durham
When? Once a week (flexible)
Contact Persy and David at firstname.lastname@example.org
We help to alleviate the loneliness and isolation sometimes felt by older people in the local community. Two volunteers are paired with one elderly resident to visit their home on a weekly or fortnightly basis for conversation, companionship and occasionally to help with small tasks such as gardening, shopping or writing letters.
Where? Durham City centre
When? Mutually convenient times
Contact Michelle at email@example.com
GOALS Youth Group
GOALS (Go Out And Live) works to widen opportunities available to young adults with learning difficulties. It is a relatively new project and so far has involved activities as diverse as bowling, snake-handling, cheerleading and African drumming. We’re always open to new ideas, and if you enjoy working with people and are up for a challenge, we’d love to hear from you!
Where? Vane Tempest Hall in Gilesgate
When? Fortnightly, on Mondays
Contact Susie, Sarah and Guy at firstname.lastname@example.org
We believe that communities should provide inclusive support to the mentally ill, and our project will achieve this through practical, fun activities and transformative listening-based projects. Through our partnership organisation, Stonham Home Group, you will be able to volunteer your time, friendship and skills to make a positive difference in these people’s lives. 1 in 4 people suffer from mental ill health at some point in their life, yet there is a strong social stigma surrounding these illnesses. This project will challenge and develop your perceptions, and allow you to interact with real people’s stories. We aim to channel this understanding into an awareness campaign, which will interact with the university and colleges by running informative fundraising nights. The Mental Health Project offers many volunteering options for students from both campuses and will include regular socials for all volunteers, so we can share our experiences in a relaxed setting.
Where? Varied locations
Contact Elizabeth at email@example.com
In this new project, SCA works with the charity Moving On, which provides opportunities to young adults at risk of homelessness. Volunteers help to run recreational days for a group of young adults, so that they can try out new activities, build up their self-confidence and self-belief, and develop relationships with students. The trips run approximately fortnightly, and offer volunteers an immensely rewarding experience.
Where? Around County Durham
When? Periodic day trips
Contact Sophie at firstname.lastname@example.org
NEPACS is an external organisation, which has been running in different forms for over 100 years. Based in the north east of England, its primary aim is to build bridges for prisoners, their families and the community. Each year, a few students are able to volunteer with NEPACS and work for a few hours either once a week or fortnightly. Volunteers are able to work within either the visitors’ centre or, after attaining prison clearance, within the prison itself in the tea bar or crèche. We’re looking for dedicated, enthusiastic, friendly people to volunteer.
Where? HMP Durham and HMP Low Newton
Contact Emily and Jess at email@example.com
Riding for the Disabled (RDA)
RDA volunteers help out at the nearby Washington Riding Centre, which provides therapeutic riding lessons for disabled riders. Our activities at the centre range from grooming the horses and laying out feed to leading the horses in lessons, where we get the chance to chat to the riders as well. The centre is a little way out of Durham, which makes for a nice car ride and a little escape from the Durham bubble every week or so. We’re quite a close group and we all share a love of horses, so if you’re at all interested please get in touch and join our mailing list!
Where? Washington Riding Centre, 20 mins drive away from Durham
When? 1-2 times a week, usually Saturday (and sometimes Wednesday) afternoons
Contact Olivia and Vaishali at firstname.lastname@example.org
We work closely with local retirement homes, Generations Together and local community groups to organise tea parties for the elderly residents of Durham. This is a great opportunity for residents and volunteers to meet up and make some new friends over tea and cake. Entertainment varies from bingo and quizzes to dancing and musical performances from students. We’re always looking for new volunteers, so whether you’re a musician, or a keen baker looking to whip up a treat for us, or you’re just looking to get to know the older generation, get in touch!
Where? St. Oswald’s Church Hall
When? 2 or 3 Wednesday afternoons per term
Contact Heather at email@example.com