Clare – volunteering after university

Clare – volunteering after university

Clare volunteers at Citizens Advice West Sussex (North, South, East) (CAWS) as a Universal Credit Best Practice Lead Assistant.

When she completed her politics and international relations degree in May 2020, job prospects were minimal. Keen to expand her skills, keep her brain stimulated and give something back to the community she searched for volunteer roles.

“I didn’t know something like my role existed until I researched CAWS’ volunteer roles. I thought it was mainly just advisors needed.” She was interviewed, welcomed on board and started training in June.

Clare volunteers one day a week and is working from home. She enjoys the variety of work.

“It could be a case review. This involves looking at local data and highlighting any trends. For example, are people contacting CAWS regarding Universal Credit reporting the same issues? I then summarise the information and write a piece for the monthly staff and volunteer newsletter. Or I could be assisting with an advisor focus group and taking meeting notes. One of the most interesting tasks is analysing national data to identify trends for West Sussex and comparing the results with our own data. During these unprecedented times Universal Credit data truly shows the impact of the economic downturn and which groups are most affected.”

Volunteering at CAWS has helped Clare gain skills that will enhance her CV and appeal to employers.

“My knowledge of Excel, presenting and analysing data, has grown enormously. It also connects with my current studies in Business Economics Msc. I feel I am doing something worthwhile which will hopefully help people through changing and influencing policy.”

She highly recommends volunteering. “Especially for people my age who have just graduated or are struggling to find full time employment. There are so many different roles that I didn’t realise existed before. There is something out there for everybody!”

“There are so many different roles that I didn’t realise existed before. There is something out there for everybody!”

“There are so many different roles that I didn’t realise existed before. There is something out there for everybody!”

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