Blog | Make the most of your summer by volunteering
The summer holidays have arrived. Whilst it’s important to relax and have fun, it’s also a perfect time to volunteer or to put plans in place to volunteer as part of working towards your top awards.
Not only will you help others but you’ll also make an impact in your community and reap loads of rewards – from making friends and having fun to gaining a sense of fulfilment. Plus, you’ll gain just the sort of knowledge and experience you need to get a job and stand out on applications for further education. Volunteering shows commitment and experience and it looks great on your CV.
What’s more? As a Scout you already have so much to offer. Through your Scouting experience, you’ll have gained amazing skills. You work well in a team, know how to communicate and know that you can make a difference in the world. Any organisation would be lucky to have you. You can find out more about how to talk about the skills you have gained in Scouting in interviews or on applications in the Get Ahead resource.
So whether you’re passionate about sport, animals, the environment, literacy or creating a fairer society, there’s a volunteering opportunity for you.
Your volunteering opportunity could also count towards your top awards. Use the summer to kick-start the process. You could carry out a short project as a volunteer as part of the International, Communities and Values list in the Chief Scout’s Platinum, Diamond or Queen’s Scout Award or to get sorted with a placement for the service/volunteering part of an award. Here are just a few great volunteering options you could consider:
- If you’re a sighted person who is over 18, you can support a person with a vision impairment to get out and about in their local area and take part in activities of their choice with Guide Dogs
- Become a soccer mentor for a young person with Behind Every Kick (Hackney)
- Show your passion for animal welfare by volunteering with the RSPCA
- Support young disabled people as they move into adulthood with Beyond Transitions (Wales)
- Become part of the Speaker Network for WaterAid and support others in Scouting to learn more about water and sanitation with WaterAid’s support.
- Work with people who’ve had experience in the Scottish Community Justice system with Clackmannanshire Community Connections (Scotland)
- Volunteer in health and social care across the UK
- Why not speak to your local Mind about how you can support mental health and wellbeing in your area
- Work towards your Duke of Edinburgh’s Award with Leonard Cheshire Disability. They have a wide range of volunteering opportunities assisting with entertainment, events or activities at the service to carrying out Disabled Access Surveys, supporting their campaigns and plenty more
- Help young people Get Out & Get Active in your local community
- Contribute to a more just society and the preservation of human rights by volunteering for Amnesty
- Develop employability skills with Activ 8 (Wales)
- Support the Alzeimer’s Society by becoming a Dementia Friends Champion and running dementia awareness sessions in your local community or across your District. Organise your own Memory Walk (and gain event management skills in the process). Or help someone living with dementia to keep doing the things they love by becoming a Side by Side volunteer
- Help children develop their literacy and numeracy skills with CYMRU (Wales)
- Adopt a canal in your area to make a real difference to your community environment by getting in touch with the Canal & River Trust
- Become a role model and a friend to a younger person with North Lanarkshire Befriending Project (Scotland)
- Develop skills, gain qualifications, make a positive community impact, and have some fun with Positive Futures London
- Raise awareness about safe sex and healthy relationships with Sex Matters Too (Wales)
- Speak out against violence and exploitation with WASSUP
Interested in longer-term volunteering or taking a Gap Year? Here are a few ways to make the most of your time.
- Gain skills, experience a new culture, and help people who need it most by working with the British Red Cross
- Work at an American Summer Camp with CCUSA. As a Scout, you’ve got all the right experience!
- Show your passion for the environment with Vinspired's Eco Talent Programme (London)
- Find other longer-term volunteering options here
Volunteer in Scouting
If you are an Explorer Scout, you can take part in the Young Leaders’ Scheme. The Young Leaders’ Scheme helps you to develop leadership skills working with younger sections. More information on the scheme can be found here.
Network member? You could consider an adult role in Scouting. There are lots of roles available, from being a Section Leader, to a trustee, an administrator, an Assistant District Commissioner, Youth Commissioner or Group Occasional Helper. If you have a particular interest in Scouting that requires a permit you could work towards your leadership permit and then volunteer with other sections, helping them to develop skills and make a difference to their futures.