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Durham University

University and City: Growing together

Latest News and Updates

Keep up to date with all the latest news and updates.

How our staff are helping good causes more than ever before…

(21 October 2019)

University staff volunteers tidying up a cemetery

We’re proud of the positive social contribution we make to our local communities, and so we’re very pleased to announce that our staff dedicated more in-work time to volunteering for local charities and good causes than ever before last year.

Supporting our staff to volunteer

We run a highly successful volunteering leave scheme which allows our staff to volunteer for up to five days per year in work time, while still being paid.

This can be through team challenges or individually.

Causes to benefit have included food banks, local schools, environmental projects, search and rescue teams, veterans’ charities and many more.

2018/19: a record year

In the 2018/19 academic year, 432 staff volunteered in work time, contributing nearly 5,000 hours to over 100 community organisations.

Add in student volunteering and the total time we dedicated to good causes in the past year tops 45,000 hours – that’s nearly 2,000 days, or over 250 weeks, or more than five years.

‘We can’t thank them enough’

One of the charities to benefit from staff volunteers is County Durham Foodbank.

Food Supply Manager Kelly Smith said: “We’ve had a variety of volunteers from Durham University this year and the contribution they’ve made to the workload of the Foodbank has been invaluable. The volunteer teams have been exceptionally hard working and have provided sustained, reliable support in our food store. We can’t thank them enough!”

Get involved…

If you’re involved with a cause or charity that would benefit from having staff volunteers help out, please visit