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  • 5th Jun 2024
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10 current volunteering opportunities in the North East

Why volunteer?

As well as being a fantastic way to give back to your local community, volunteering is great for our mental health and has been proven to help relieve stress and alleviate symptoms of depression. It can also be a fun way to meet new people or boost your CV.

There are so many positives to be gained from volunteering but most of all, it’s about doing something positive with your spare time.

Whatever your reasons for wanting to volunteer, here are some of the current volunteering opportunities across the North East.

Durham Wildlife Trust

Durham Wildlife Trust is looking for volunteers to help protect and maintain the environment and wildlife around Durham, as well as raising awareness amongst the general public.

Training is provided and anyone over the age of 18 can volunteer with Durham Wildlife Trust. Hours are flexible and it’s a great opportunity to help local wildlife thrive.

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Newcastle Food Bank

As we all know, many are now relying on food banks to survive. Newcastle Food Bank is looking for volunteers over the age of 18 who can work during the week to help with the running of the food bank. By volunteering, you’ll be making a big difference to the people of Newcastle who need support right now.

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Age UK Sunderland, Durham, Newcastle

There are many elderly people in our region experiencing loneliness and poverty. Age UK has a wide range of services looking for volunteers to help. Anyone over the age of 16 can volunteer and there are opportunities to help in many different ways, from attending support groups to face-to-face or telephone befriending. If you have an hour or two to spare each week and would like to do something to help the older generation, this one is for you.

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Durham Beach Cleans

This is a great option if you don’t have the time to regularly volunteer – get involved with a local beach clean-up or litter pick. This year, hundreds of volunteers have collected a record five tonnes of rubbish from Durham’s Heritage Coast. If you’d like to arrange your own or help out with an existing beach clean you can email [email protected] to get involved or keep an eye on their Facebook page for upcoming community dates.

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Newcastle Dog and Cat Shelter

Rescuing and caring for a range of four legged friends looking for their forever home, Newcastle Dog and Cat Shelter is facing a difficult time right now and needs volunteers to help. Whether it’s caring for the animals, fundraising, admin support or working in their charity shop, there are many ways that you can help. Check out the website for current volunteer vacancies.

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Sunderland Mind

This wellbeing hub in Sunderland is a voluntary organisation meaning it relies entirely on the dedication of its volunteers to deliver its mental health and wellbeing services in the region. From helping with marketing and communication to supporting with a young people’s club, check out their range of current vacancies to see if you could make a difference.

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Urban Green Newcastle 

The volunteers at Urban Green help to make Newcastle’s parks and green spaces the best they can be for both people and wildlife to enjoy. No skills or experience is necessary – just enthusiasm for the task in hand. From helping with community garden to being a ‘roving ranger’ or volunteering in the café – it’s a brilliant way to meet new people and get outdoors.

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Durham Foodbank 

There are a range of foodbanks within this network looking to support those struggling within the Durham area. Whether you can work in one of the centres or help as a driver moving food between locations, Durham Foodbank always needs volunteers to help make a difference in the community.

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Durham Cathedral

Did you know that this iconic landmark needs 500 volunteers to run effectively? From helping keep the cathedral clean to arranging flowers and greeting visitors there are roles for everyone within this beautiful space. Anyone can volunteer no matter your age or skill set – all they ask is for enthusiasm and passion and they’ll find a role for you.

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Bryson’s Animal Shelter

Bryson’s is a shelter in Eighton Banks, Gateshead that cares for small animals, dogs, cats, horses and donkeys. They’ve been around for more than 70 years and with no government funding they actively encourage volunteers to help them give the animals the best quality of life possible. You don’t need to commit to a set pattern or amount of times – just join when you can – whether it’s a dog walk, cat cuddling or fundraising. Must be over 18 for insurance purposes.

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Laura Kingston
Founder and Editor

Laura is the Founder and Editor of High Life North. She had the idea to set up an exclusively digital women’s magazine after feeling there was a gap in the market in the North East. With over 10 years of experience in marketing and PR, Laura had a very clear…

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