IT Sessions Update by Project Leader, Lauren Lloyd

My name is Lauren Lloyd, I am an undergraduate student, studying Religious Education with QTS3yrs at Lancaster.

I volunteered this year to be a project leader who would run the IT Sessions for the elderly residents, to help them with their basic computer skills.

I volunteered as a basic volunteer last year and have fallen in love with the project ever since. To be the project leader this year and take over the sessions has just been such a great experience! It includes a lot of responsibility and organisation but the result is just fantastic! You get to socialise with the residents and the volunteers, portraying a positive student relationship with the residents as a whole. These sessions allow you to develop your teaching skills and confidence through constant interaction with volunteers and the residents.

Through volunteering in these sessions I was given the opportunity to get involved in carol singing, proposed by one of the residents. Other volunteers have been coming carol singing as well and we have found it a bit of a challenge but at the same time it is just so much fun!

Through getting involved in the sessions so many opportunities open up to you! You make new friends, you get involved in new things and you even learn something new yourself through teaching the residents!

 Here are two comments from two residents that attended the sessions this year:

 “I found the sessions very helpful, a positive learning experience on which will genuinely help me.” Joan Houghton.

 “Camaraderiegood. Students very able, willing and friendly.” The Westerns

 Here is some feedback from two of the volunteers who attended the sessions this year, explaining how they felt about getting involved in the sessions:

 “Good fun with very friendly residents. Learned some new things myself!” Heather Taylor.

 “Very enjoyable, full of lovely people.” Marina Monk.

 As you can see from the feedbackthe volunteering IT Sessions have been very enjoyable by everyone! I would strongly recommendgetting involved in the sessions, as it has trulybeen an amazing experience!

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Students’ Union Volunteers help care for the Environment

On Saturday 26th November, volunteers from the University of Cumbria Students’ Union engaged in a beach clean, at Bardsea, near Ulverston along with community volunteers from the Morecambe Bay Partnership, to help care for the environment.

Having left the Lancaster campus at 8:30am on a very dark & windy morning it looked as though the day was going to be wash-out! However, patches of blue sky and the odd burst of sunshine were a welcome sight.

After a hot drink and biscuit in the minibus and the initial health & safety briefing, it was all hands on deck. Armed with litter pickers, gloves and bin bags the volunteers set off in search of debris to collect. On first appearance, it looked as though there was not much litter to collect, but once we started looking in the long grass, the bin bags soon became too heavy to carry!

Matt Sanderson, from the Morecambe Bay Partnership was delighted with the extra help from the Students’ Union Volunteers who, he said, would be welcome back anytime.

As the Dickensian Market was taking place in Ulverston over the weekend, there was just enough time to take a look. International students, Deanne & Hu enjoyed seeing the costumes and market stalls in the town and having their photo taken with Queen Victoria!

Volunteer Mandy spent her birthday on the beach clean and said, “It was the best birthday I’ve had in ages!”

Matt Tennant, The Students’ Union’s Environmental and Ethical Officer is keen to get more students involved in environmental and conservation volunteering opportunities. He said, “It was well worth the effort, we cleared the beach of polystyrene, plastic & glass bottles and harmful canisters washed up with the tide, which also helped protect the wildlife.”

“It’s so important that volunteering is fun as well as being an opportunity to meet people and make a difference. We thoroughly enjoyed doing our bit for the environment and catching the Dickensian Market Day was an added bonus!” said Emma Egglestone, Volunteering Support & Development Manager.