Discovery Student Volunteering Swansea
A former Cabinet Minister, Baroness Jay, visited Swansea University on 29 October 2010 to hear first-hand from volunteers and project co-ordinators about the significant benefits being delivered through a range of student-led activities and charitable projects.
Baroness Jay patron of Discovery Student Volunteering Swansea said: "It is a privilege to meet with the Discovery volunteers in Swansea and to learn of the excellent work that is being undertaken by students in local and international communities.
"The broad range of charitable activities offer students new experiences and opportunities and, as importantly, help to increase mutual understanding and equality."
Discovery currently delivers over 30 projects which are aimed at enriching the lives of disadvantaged people, challenging discrimination and providing support for people who have a disability. Each of these projects are led and run by students from Swansea University.
Before visiting the new Discovery Charity Shop in Brynmill, The Baroness was briefed on the Siavonga project and the partnership agreement with the Siavonga Nutrition Group in Zambia, signed earlier in the day by the The Lord Mayor of Swansea, Richard Lewis, on behalf of Discovery Student Volunteering Swansea.
During the afternoon, The Baroness also heard from a group of students about a small selection of the projects and how an understanding of issues - such as disability, homelessness, special needs and cultural awareness - are an important enhancement to personal development and academic studies.
By way of example, the volunteers presented an overview of the charitable work being undertaken locally such as the well established beach cleaning scheme; the highly valued decorating service for local residents; and the help given to asylum seekers and refugees living in the community.
Christine Watson, Manager of Discovery at Swansea University explained: “This is an exciting time for the Discovery Student Volunteering Swansea team; with funding being awarded to progress a number of new initiatives as well as furthering work already in progress.”
To support the work of Discovery Student Volunteering Swansea, and to complement the many fund-raising activities undertaken by the students, Swansea University provides a substantial annual grant to the charity.
Professor Richard B Davies, Vice Chancellor of Swansea University concluded: "Discovery is highly professional in ensuring that the commitment and enthusiasm of the student volunteers have a significant and sustained impact in Swansea and beyond. The University is immensely proud that so many of its students find the time to brighten the lives of those who are less fortunate."
For further information about volunteering in Swansea, visit: www.swansea.ac.uk/discovery