News & Insights 7 June 2024

Celebrating Volunteers’ Week

Picture of the Volunteers' Week logo.

This week, we’re celebrating 40 years of Volunteers’ Week to inspire more people to make a difference in their communities.

Be part of the week and join The Big Help Out

This year Volunteers’ Week will also lead up to The Big Help Out, from Friday 7th to Sunday 9th June. The event will give people the chance to experience a range of volunteer taster sessions. 

Picture of our Action Tutoring volunteer group.

Find out more about volunteering as a tutor by signing up to our Big Help Out online information session, below. 

Meet our vital volunteer tutors

We chatted to some of this year’s Action Tutoring volunteer award winners to find out more about why they value volunteering.

Picture of Action Tutoring volunteer Steve Hackett.

Action Tutoring volunteer, Steve.

Steve is one of our many invaluable volunteer tutors. As an Action Tutoring Volunteer Awards 2024 winner, he knows first-hand the power of giving back. 

“I love the occasions when a pupil makes a connection or suddenly understands a concept,” Steve says. 

Picture of Action Tutoring volunteer Laura Shepherd.

Action Tutoring volunteer tutor, Laura.

Laura feels similarly. A fellow volunteer award winner, Laura’s desire to become a teacher led her to join Action Tutoring as a volunteer tutor. 

A charity which supports pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds with their English and maths education, Laura was eager to sign up. 

“Action Tutoring’s values really align with mine as they aim to help every pupil who needs support,” Laura says.

“By volunteering, I enjoy knowing how much of a difference being a tutor can make for pupils.”

Picture of Action Tutoring volunteer Claire Gregson.

Action Tutoring volunteer tutor, Claire.

Claire certainly recognises the need to give pupils “a bit of extra support”, particularly during times of global change. Retiring early from banking just as Covid arrived, she was inspired to become a volunteer tutor to support children affected.

“I felt some children were disadvantaged by the lockdown and I wanted to do something to help,” Claire says.

“Volunteering with Action Tutoring was the perfect opportunity.”

Picture of Action Tutoring volunteer tutor Heather Halls.

Action Tutoring volunteer, Heather.

Heather also knows how volunteering as a tutor really matters. Currently a medical research scientist, her maths and literacy passion was also another motivating factor in her joining Action Tutoring. 

“The small skills learnt and continued practice soon add up to increase pupils’ knowledge enormously,” Heather says. 

“By volunteering, pupils benefit from this special session time to focus on learning in a way which works for them.”

Steve, Laura, Claire and Heather were chosen as Action Tutoring Volunteer Awards 2024 winners for going above and beyond. Put forward by our programme coordinators, they have completed more than 300 tutoring sessions between them since 2022. 

So what keeps them motivated to volunteer so often and for so long?

Steve, who recently retired from being a manager in engineering, adds: “It seems harder than ever for young people to find their way in life. 

“So I wanted to continue helping in some way and by volunteering, seeing the light of understanding in a pupil’s eyes is the most rewarding feeling of all.” 

Laura, who enjoys reading, walking and music in her spare time, adds: “I’ve had many volunteer tutor highlights. 

“I love making the sessions as enjoyable as possible for all. 

“Seeing the pupils get involved in sessions after they’d sometimes initially doubted themselves, makes me smile and want to volunteer.”

Heather, who is currently based in Oxford, adds: “I have a passion for supporting children to fulfil their potential in life. 

“By volunteering, you see how the children develop in confidence over time and work together in a supportive team.” 

And what about Claire, who has tutored more than 100 sessions since volunteering with Action Tutoring last year? 

“I love getting to know the children and showing them learning can be fun,” Claire says. 

“I love volunteering because if I can give young people that bit of extra support, it feels very satisfying; win win.

Picture of our Action Tutoring volunteer group.