Volunteer

Please note: We are no longer accepting applications for students wishing to become a listening volunteer for this academic year. Applications will re-open in January 2019.

We’re really sorry to disappoint anyone, but this has been a decision taken to ensure the highest standard of training and call-taking practice for our current volunteers. If you’re in first or second year and would like to get involved next year, please get in touch with [email protected] in early January. Thank you!


 

Exeter Student Nightline is a student-led organisation made up entirely of student volunteers from the University of Exeter. We are always looking to recruit enthusiastic and conscientious students to give up a couple of nights a term to man the phones (you don’t have to stay awake all night, don’t worry!) or to assist the society in other ways. Exeter Student Nightline is a fantastic society to be involved with and a great way to give back to the student community, whether you’re an undergraduate or postgraduate and the hours spent volunteering with us count towards the Exeter Award Scheme.

If you’re interested in volunteering, please contact our Training Officers at: [email protected]

Why volunteer?

  • A chance to really make a difference and provide wellbeing support to your fellow students
  • Gain new important life-skills (communication, teamwork, active listening)
  • Meet new like-minded individuals – our volunteers are a lovely group!
  • An amazing CV booster! Your hours with us can count towards the Exeter Award and our committee are able to provide references on request.

Who can volunteer?

  • Any Exeter student can apply to volunteer with us, and you don’t need any prior experience (although it helps!)
  • There are only 3 key requirements for potential volunteers:
    • You’re able to get to Streatham Campus for night shifts.
    • You’re happy and comfortable to talk on the phone in different contexts, and pass our training calls well.
    • That you have a strong verbal and written fluency of English.

What does volunteering involve? 

  •  We ask that volunteers do a minimum of four shifts per term. Shifts are 8pm-8am but you do get a chance to sleep!
  • On shift, our volunteers are responsible for answering phone calls, Skype messages and calls, emails and instant messenger.
  • Active listening – this is an essential skill for the Nightline volunteer and not something that necessarily comes easily to everyone. You will learn through our training process what active listening involves, and how to provide the best service possible to student callers.
  • Information – volunteers also provide information to callers (e.g. taxi numbers, contact details for other services) using the resources available in our office.

What can you expect from us?

  • Full training on how to be a volunteer is provided.
  • Ongoing support from committee, including a committee member assigned to be your support group leader. You can always get in touch with them if you’re struggling to meet your shift requirements or have any other concerns.
  • You will always have another fully trained volunteer member supporting you whilst you are on shift.

How does the training work?

  • Any student interested in becoming a volunteer must first get in touch with our training officers at their email address ([email protected]). They will then send you an application form to fill out (simple questions about why you want to volunteer – it’s not rocket science!)
  • After you’ve filled out a form, our training officers will add you to the mailing list and keep you updated about the next training session.
  • This session is a comprehensive introduction to being an Exeter Student Nightline volunteer. This includes what we do and how to take calls and be an effective volunteer. The training usually takes about 2 hours; now is the time to ask all and any questions you have about volunteering with us! At this point you will also be asked to sign our confidentiality agreement, which recognises that you agree to keep the content of the session confidential. You are not obligated to continue training, but you are not allowed to discuss the nature of our training – even if you decide to stop at this point.
  • If you decide to continue with the training process after the information session, you will next be signed up for two separate ‘sit-in’ shifts, where you will take fake training calls from committee members. You won’t be taking real calls at this time, but shadowing fully trained volunteers on shift, and learning how the office works.
  • After these sit-ins, you will have a final ‘Prelim’ shift, with another fully trained volunteer where you will be taking real calls.
  • Then you’re done!