Hi, I’m Bea and I’m at second year social sciences student at Durham. I’m the Durham University Student Volunteering (DUSVO) Project Leader for DASH this year. This means it’s my job to liaise with both DASH and the University to promote student volunteering and to encourage the raising of awareness and funds for DASH within the wider student community. I came across DASH when I was looking for volunteering opportunities through DUSVO and I thought it looked like an amazing organisation. Homelessness was something I knew little about but had always wanted to look into and this seemed like a great way of learning more and getting involved in a local charity too. The role has looked a bit different to what I expected when I first got the job at the end of my first year. Unlike the previous Project Leader, I have been unable to organise in person volunteering and outreach days, but I think we’ve still managed to have some impact this year. Some highlights include working with Scoop, the zero-waste shop in Durham, who have been raising money for DASH this year. We also managed to put a collection box in the shop so people could donate items for welcome packs. Another great fundraising initiative was St Cuthbert’s college’s 12 Days of Outreach, in which the students at Cuth’s undertook various challenges to raise money for DASH at Christmas time.
Although it has been a shame to have to do everything online, I think that we’ve all learnt to adapt and have definitely got better at using Zoom! I’m really looking forward to getting back to doing things in person and there are a few things I’m very excited about in the summer term, including fundraising events like the Walk On fashion show and some physical volunteering like litter picking near the DASH offices in Gilesgate with some student volunteers. Fingers crossed we can get back to normal soon!