Student Volunteering Week 2022

Student Volunteering Week 2022

Student Volunteering Week 2022 takes place this February. It celebrates the benefits volunteering can bring, including improving student wellbeing, developing employment prospects and the chance to contribute to community life.

The past year has seen our wonderful student volunteers rise to the challenge of the pandemic by being flexible in their approach and generous with their knowledge on virtual platforms. They helped us to develop new techniques for engaging with young people online, came up with the idea for sharing our favourite local walks #HWNlandWalks on Instagram, made wellbeing calls on behalf of Northumberland County Blind Association and promoted our work to other young people.

Two of our student volunteers have now moved on to university, and we are delighted to have welcomed three more student volunteers to our growing team.

We asked some of our student volunteers to tell us why they volunteer with us and what the experience has meant to them.

Communication Support Volunteer Molly who joined the team recently says “I decided to volunteer as it’s a great opportunity to meet new people and to gain that sense of accomplishment when you help others. I feel like now being a volunteer with Healthwatch Northumberland I can give something back to my community. I would recommend volunteering to other students as it has enabled me to step outside of my comfort zone and I’ve already gained more self-confidence.”

Leah joined us in 2019 and she told us “I have thoroughly enjoyed volunteering for Healthwatch Northumberland over the past couple of years. Most of my time here has been in lockdown, meaning I haven’t been able to be in the office or help with some of the things I would have normally. However, this has meant that I have had the opportunity to engage in activities and help out with things I wouldn’t have otherwise, such as carrying out welfare calls on behalf of Northumberland County Blind Association, or helping with social media and running quizzes on the Instagram page. I would definitely recommend volunteering to anyone considering it. It has been so rewarding for me over the last couple of years; I learnt about so many organisations that I had no idea about, and have met some amazing people.”

Volunteer Jess is going to work with as a Community Engagement Volunteer. She says “I recommend volunteering with Healthwatch Northumberland to experience a working environment that isn’t school related, to help you be that little better.”

We say a big thank you to all of our volunteers for their help and support over the last 12 months.

Find out more about how you could get involved at our Volunteering Page.

Spotlight on: Vision Northumberland

Spotlight on: Vision Northumberland

As part of our Spotlight on… series we are shining a light on Vision Northumberland, formerly Northumberland County Blind Association.

Vision Northumberland is a local charity based in Morpeth which provides advice and support services to blind and visually impaired people to enable them to gain the knowledge, skills and confidence to live a fulfilled and independent life. It offers a home visiting service, clubs and support groups, telephone counselling, volunteer drivers to help clients get around, computer training, help with energy bills, low vision aids assessments and much more. Clients can also benefit from regular phone calls with the charity’s telephone support service, Client Connect (formerly Sightline).

Vision Northumberland’s volunteers based across the county have recently been honoured with The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

The award recognises the vital support that the charity provided to the community in response to the pandemic by setting up a telephone befriending service with 91 volunteers making telephone calls. At the height of the pandemic over 600 visually impaired people were contacted to reduce isolation, loneliness and provide a lifeline during unprecedented times. Our very own Healthwatch staff team and volunteers were happy to be involved in this project.

You can get in touch by calling 01670 514316 or email

Volunteers’ Week 2021

Volunteers’ Week 2021