Frequently Asked Questions
On this page you will find answers to our most common Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) at Warwick Volunteers. If you don't find what you're looking for, or you've got any remaining queries, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or pop into the office in SUHQ.
Questions from Volunteers
Joining Warwick Volunteers
Can I get a reference?
How do I become a member of Warwick Volunteers?
You can join our volunteering community by logging into our website here. Select the areas of volunteering you’re interested in, you will then receive email notifications when new opportunities are registered. When you find something that interests you click on 'Register Interest' and you'll be contacted by the project or organisation with more information about how to get involved.
Does it cost anything to join Warwick Volunteers?
No! Warwick Volunteers is free to join, and we want to make sure that you are never out of pocket as a result of volunteering. All reasonable expenses will be reimbursed provided it is approved in advance by a member of staff. Full details of our expenses policy can be found here.
I didn't join Warwick Volunteers at the beginning of term, is it too late to join now?
No, it's never too late to join Warwick Volunteers and there are volunteering opportunities on offer throughout the year.
Please note, that some projects only run during terms 1 and 2 and so places may only be available towards the beginning of the academic year. If you are unsure or need any help choosing a project, e-mail email@example.com or contact our office to speak with a member of staff.
Where is the Warwick Volunteers office? And when is it open?
The Warwick Volunteers office is based in SUHQ, next to The Green Room (formerly Canopy restaurant). Staff divide their time between working from home and the office so please contact us via email before visiting to ensure the office is open and a member of the team will be available to speak to.
How do I hear about new volunteering opportunities?
If you have registered on our website to receive email alerts you will be emailed when a new opportunity is added that matches your interests. You will also receive a weekly newsletter which is sent to members every Thursday (You can unsubscribe at any time). You can also follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. If you need any help choosing a project, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our office to speak with a member of staff.
What's expected of me as a volunteer?
For a full list of your rights and responsibilities as a volunteer, have a look at our volunteer policy.
How many hours do I need to volunteer per week?
Warwick Volunteers offers an extensive selection of projects ranging from weekly activities to one-off events, which means the time commitment varies between projects. You can commit as much or as little time as you want. Even if you're short of time, there are plenty of opportunities for you to get involved! The opportunity's listing on the website should explain any specific project requirement or just contact us to speak with a member of staff.
Can I get involved in more than one project?
Of course you can, as long as you feel you have the time (and energy!) to commit to the projects. Have a look at our browse opportunities page to see the range of opportunities on offer.
What do I do if I volunteer and subsequently suspect I may have got Coronavirus?
You will need to follow the university's guidance for self isolating and contacting the Test and Trace team. If you do test positive please include us in any reporting process that you make.
I have an idea for a new project - can you help me set it up?
If you've got an idea for a project, Warwick Volunteers can provide advice and guidance to help turn your idea into a reality. Each year, members of Warwick Volunteers develop new projects that will make a difference to the community and many of our opportunities are led by student volunteers. If you are interested in setting up a new project, contact the WV office to discuss your idea or drop us an email.
I'd like to volunteer overseas - do you have any international projects?
Although Warwick Volunteers primarily works with local community organisations, we do have opportunities to volunteer in Africa through Warwick in Africa. Find out more here.
I'm staying in the area over the vacation - do you have projects that run during the holidays?
Warwick Volunteers primarily offers volunteering during term time but we have volunteering opportunities available throughout the year! If you're staying in the area during the holidays and would like to know which projects are available, contact us by e-mail email@example.com
Our sports club/society would like to volunteer as a group - what's the next step?
Warwick Volunteers offers the opportunity for members of societies and sports clubs to volunteer together and share their skills and experiences through both regular and one-off volunteering events. If your society or sports club is interested in volunteering, or has an idea for a project, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or arrange to come and see us in the office for a chat.
I'm not a student at Warwick University - can I still volunteer for your projects?
Unfortunately you won't be able to volunteer with Warwick Volunteers, but you can contact your local volunteer centre who will be able to provide you with lots of volunteering opportunities. If you live in Coventry, you need to contact Voluntary Action Coventry and for Warwickshire, Warwickshire Community And Voluntary Action.
What's a DBS check?
The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) carry out police and identity checks for all volunteers working in any capacity with children or vulnerable adults. We have a full and comprehensive guide to DBS checks here.
What kinds of ID can I use for my DBS form?
There are many different types of identification that you can use to support your DBS application. View a full list of identification documents that are accepted. We have a full and comprehensive guide to DBS checks here.
Do all projects need a DBS check?
No, DBS checks are not required for all of our projects. However, they are essential for projects working with children or vulnerable adults, including all schools projects. You can filter projects that require a DBS in our browse opportunities page. If you're still unsure whether you need to complete a DBS check, e-mail email@example.com stating your name, university number and the project(s) you are interested in. We have a full and comprehensive guide to DBS checks here.
What is a certificate of good conduct?
A ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ (CoGC) is a general term given to the check of police records in a volunteer’s home country, or the country in which they have resided. Each country has a different process for checking police records, and different countries will often refer to the checking process with a different name. For example, in some countries, this is referred to as a 'Certificate of No Criminal Conviction'.
Do I need a certificate of good conduct?
Volunteers who have not been permanently resident in the UK for the last 5 years must supply a ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ issued by the country or countries in which they have lived during that time. Although a Certificate of Good Conduct is compulsory for education projects, not all volunteering projects require you to have one. Visit the Certificate of Good Conduct page for more information.
How do I get a certificate of good conduct?
The process varies depending on the country in question. If you are not sure about how to obtain a Certificate of Good Conduct from a specific country, the best place to start is to phone the appropriate embassy and they can advise you regarding the correct procedure. Sometimes a relative is able to request this for you and can then scan and email it to you although where this is not possible, the easiest method may be to apply during the holiday periods in person.
If I have a DBS check, do I also need a certificate of good conduct?
This depends on the project you are wishing to volunteer for as not all projects require a Certificate of Good Conduct. However, where a Certificate of Good Conduct is required, a DBS check alone is insufficient. Whilst a DBS is a check of any criminal records within the UK, a Certificate of Good Conduct is a check of your criminal records within the country or countries you have previously resided in.
What training opportunities do you offer?
Warwick Volunteers is committed to providing training to all volunteers relevant to the project that you join. We hold many different training sessions throughout the year to ensure that you are fully prepared for your volunteering experience. Many projects, including Education opportunities, have specific workshops which are compulsory for all volunteers. For specific information on training sessions, talk to a Project Leader or member of staff.
Can I still volunteer if I've missed the training session(s) for an education project?
The training sessions for education projects are compulsory, so if you've missed a session unfortunately you won't be able to join the project this academic year. Many training sessions are held more than once so check our training timetable for full details (available in Term 1). If you have missed the training, browse through our other opportunities or come along to the WV office and we can help you choose another project!
Do I get official accreditation for my volunteering?
If you would like formal accreditation for your volunteering, there are a number of options including logging your hours with us and certificates. Read more on our Accreditation page.
I'd like to become a Project Leader - where do I start?
Lots of our projects are student-run and need Project Leaders to help manage them. If you'd like to play a bigger part in a particular project, why not apply for a position in our annual Project Leader recruitment in term 2. Click here for more information on the responsibilities of Project Leaders.
How can I become a member of the exec?
The Warwick Volunteers Student Executive Committee is central to the day-to-day running of Warwick Volunteers and is a great way of getting more involved. Recruitment is held each year early in term 2. For more information on the roles and responsibilities of the Warwick Volunteers executive committee, click here.
I'm interested in a career in the voluntary sector - do you have any information for me?
We recommend that you contact the Student Opportunity careers team who can provide you with a lot of information on working in the charity and voluntary sector and direct you to the appropriate resources.
How can I claim back expenses?
We want to make sure you're never out of pocket as a result of your volunteering so all reasonable expenses will be reimbursed provided it is approved in advance by a member of staff. Full details of our expenses policy and details of how to claim back expenses can be found here.
Can I get a reference?
Yes! We're happy to respond to requests from employers or other agencies to provide a reference for Warwick Volunteers who have volunteered with us. Find out more here