Our student volunteers
We have a number of students, who juggle learning with volunteering.
We asked them why and this is what they said…
Read the story of Elizabeth Tomlinson (pictured above) below
Law student Elizabeth Tomlinson finds it extremely gratifying to know that her volunteering work is making a real difference to so many people.
The want and willingness to give something back to the communities in and around the area she studies in, led law student Elizabeth Tomlinson to applying to become a Citizens Advice Caerphilly Blaenau Gwent volunteer.
The 20-year-old from Surrey is a second-year student at Cardiff University. Elizabeth wanted to get to know the communities around South Wales during her time in Wales and felt volunteering could help do that.
She said: “I didn’t just want to come and study in Cardiff, I wanted to use my time in university to give back to the area I am lucky enough to have moved to. Citizens Advice was the obvious choice.”
As a law student, Elizabeth has a wealth of expertise and knowledge we can use to help our clients. She applied for the role in the Autumn and said the application process and interview gave her a good idea of how our volunteers work and the training which is needed to ensure we are offering accurate, timely and consistent information to clients.
And she said she is learning so much while training and knows she can use these skills to help our clients.
“The experience I have gained just by applying and training will help me so much throughout my studies and for when I am looking for a placement,” she said. “I have been able to carry-out the training online and the support I am receiving is excellent. Communication has been brilliant and Jill Maddison has been an excellent mentor.”
The flexibility of the role has enabled Elizabeth to do the training around her studies.
“As we can train at our own pace,” she said. “With no pressure to meet tight deadlines, I have been doing my online lectures and fitting them around two days a week of training. I have discovered so much. My confidence is growing and I know that the resources and one-to-one support will be there when I go live as an adviser.”
Millie Dobson loves making a difference.
“I wanted to be able help to people out during this weird time. Volunteering gives me that opportunity. It will support my CV and make me more employable post university. As a law student, it is enabling me put the things I have studied (online during covid!) into real life scenarios. The team at Caerphilly have been so supportive, and I love being able to make a difference.”
Volunteering with us made sense for student Kieran Hughes
Kieran said: “Volunteering at Citizens Advice was an easy choice when I thought about it. It provided an opportunity to meet a like-minded community, develop my capabilities, and use this chance to help those in need – especially in a trying time such as the COVID-19 pandemic.”