Durham University Student Volunteering and Outreach (DUSVO) - Global Student Experience Award
Name: Durham University Student Volunteering and Outreach (DUSVO)Position: Staff and student volunteering platform Winner of: Global Student Experience Award
Durham University Student Volunteering and Outreach (DUSVO) won the Global Student Experience Award at the Global Durham Awards 2023 for the team’s work on supporting 45 student-led volunteering projects.
DUSVO is a student-led volunteering organisation that encourages and supports volunteers. Both UK and international students can learn more about people from other cultures through volunteer work and international students can promote an understanding of their home culture.
How it works
We have over 30 student-led project students can choose from on offer by DUSVO.
DUSVO works with hundreds of charities and community organisations and offers services to North-East schools and hundreds of individuals. In large part due to DUSVO’s efforts, the University has held the Investing in Volunteers accreditation for the past nine years consecutively and recently received the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in the Community since 1989.
Many of the volunteering opportunities that DUSVO facilitates encourage international collaboration. Some recent examples have included:
Durham Global Schools, which gives international students the opportunity to teach local students about their culture and traditions
Tutor for Ukraine, a project which matches volunteer English language tutors with Ukrainian refugees
Volunteering opportunities at refugee kids’ clubs
Working with Durham County Council on events including Lunar new year and the County Council International Welcome, and events relating to the Erasmus students’ network and the International Student Association.
Many of DUSVO’s 3000 active student volunteers are from international student backgrounds. Two of its executive committee presidents over the last three years have been international students, and half of this year’s executive committee is made up of international students.
Reaction to winning the award
“We are thrilled to have won the Global Student Experience Awards this year,” said Georgia Donohue, Programme Coordinator for DUSVO. “It really is testament to the hard work and commitment from our staff, student leaders and volunteers.”
“Cultural volunteering has grown in popularity recently, resulting in us introducing it as one of our predominant themes within volunteering; therefore, it is wonderful to see our global efforts recognised so we can continue to develop our current volunteering opportunities in this space.
“Every year we have a new cohort of students sign up to volunteer that bring an array of different skills and interests, making it ever more important that we are regularly adapting our offerings to cultivate these motivations to create a lasting impact within the University community as well as around the county.
“Volunteering at Durham allows students the chance to integrate into their new community in a low commitment way, but also to share their knowledge, skills, and experience with different community partners to ultimately diversify the county and support existing organisations and charities, making volunteering invaluable for student experience and community development.”