City : Volunteering Mall : Starting Your Own Project

Volunteering Mall

Volunteering your way...

If you cannot find a volunteer project that you are interested in then you can always set-up your own project or event!

information.gif You might complete your own charity bike ride dedicated to a cause, organise a bake sale at college, or shave all your hair off!

Below we've listed some advice on why setting up your own project is a great idea and how you can do it...

  • What skills can I learn?

    As well as helping others, organising your own project or event is a great way to show future employer's a number of skills and traits...

    • Motivation: Finding what you want to do and building the project up from nothing is an incredibly strong way of showing that you have the motivation to go out and make your ambitions happen.

    • Self-management skills: It will take organisation and good time management to be able to set-up your own project. These are really valuable skills.

    • Leadership skills: Leading your own project shows great leadership skills which will be impressive to any employer.

    • Creative thinking: In setting up your project you will have shown initiative and creativity. You were able to identify an area of need and create a project that helped!

    • Problem Solving: You are likely to face a couple of bumps along the way, and remembering how you dealt with these issues will be a great way of showing how capable you are of dealing with unforeseen problems.

    • Financial skills: In managing a project you will have to think about how to budget for your project, or at least how to manage your fundraising.  This shows you have at least some skills in managing money!

    • Team work and interpersonal skills: If you have had to manage other volunteers, then you can show skills for dealing with other people in a work environment.
  • Questions to ask before you start


    • What will your project do? Does it meet a need in your local community?
    • What skills do you need in the people working on your project?
    • What problems or obstacles might get in the way?


    • How will you overcome any problems or obstacles?
    • How will your project best meet the need for help?
    • How much time can you devote to your project?
    • How long will your project last?
    • How will you budget for the project?


    • When will the project/ event take place?
    • When will you start telling people about it?

    information.gif When answering these questions, BE REALISTIC - solving world hunger may seem like a great idea, but it’s best to set yourself a more achievable goal!

  • Getting funding

    If you're planning a big project that will require some spending to get it up and running, applying for funding is a good idea. 

    You can look for funding here:

    • vInspired Cashpoint- You can get up to £500 to make your idea happen.
    • The Alec Dickson Trust - Apply for a grant for your volunteering or community service project.
    • UnLtd - If you're a bit of a social entrepreneur, UnLtd can help you get your social enterprise off the ground.
  • Working with a charity or organisation

    If you set up a partnership with an existing charity you are likely to be able to launch quickly as you will have the support of the charity behind your project.

    positive.gif If you are part of a national challenge or programme that will give you materials to use during your project and when advertising it. You may even get encouraging emails and letters to assit your fundraising!

    positive.gif If you've established your partnership you should make sure that your partner understands your project’s aim and ensure that you are both working together for the same aim.

    information.gif When you are applying for funding or a partnership make sure that you are well prepared and have planned your ideas - it's a good idea practice a 60 second pitch of your idea so you know exactly how you'll sell your idea.

  • Fixers

    Fixers are young people who want to change things for the better - many have been through difficult times, and have used that experience to campaign on issues that matter to them, like being homeless, domestic abuse, or drink and drug misuse.

    The Fixers website has lots of stories about how young people have used their experiences to change the world for the better - you might be able to get some inspiration for your own project!

    If you're aged 16-25 and are inspired to be a fixer yourself, find out more info here.

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