UKTGA January webinar: Bite Size Volunteering - 2-3pm, 25 January 2024

Join UKTGA for our first webinar of 2024:

Bite Size Volunteering

2-3pm Thursday 25 January, Zoom (registration details will be sent through UKTGA JISCmail)

Jonny Baxter, Volunteer and Community Support Officer – Queen’s Students’ Union – Belfast

Jonny joins us to discuss his work on Handy Helpers – the Bitesize Volunteering offer to Students at Queen’s University Belfast.

Handy Helpers sits with in a bigger Student Union Volunteering Team and is one of 3 flagship programmes.  Handy Helpers is a unique initiative which enables students to take part in a wide range of one-off volunteering opportunities in the local community. They can pick and choose what activities they want to participate in based on interests and availability.  From community gardening to decorating charity premises and event logistics, students will gain experience in various settings while actively contributing to the local community.

The key focus of the programme is for student development and to benefit the wider community on and off campus.  This involves strong links with Community Engagement, Sustainability, and the wider community sector.

This presentation aims to share:

  • Experiences to help engage student volunteering.
  • Space to focus on why we volunteer.
  • Creative ideas of how to take practical next steps.

UKTGA 2023 Annual Conference - Strengthening Town and Gown Relationships: Lessons from the United Kingdom

Last month the UKTGA hosted their highly anticipated 2023 annual conference, which proved to be a captivating showcase featuring a diverse lineup of exceptional speakers, all centered around the dynamic relationship between town and gown agencies. This full-day conference provided a platform for insightful discussions, with a particular focus on fostering effective partnerships between local authorities and university cities. The overarching theme of this year's conference centered on the essential task of strengthening town-gown relationships, drawing upon valuable lessons from various regions across the United Kingdom. Among the compelling topics explored, speakers offered invaluable insights into their successful night safety initiatives and dedicated services addressing noise and antisocial behavior. The event delved into the intricacies of neighbourhood management frameworks and the importance of considering broader planning considerations in student accommodation.

Year after year, the UKTGA takes immense pride in bringing together individuals operating at the intersection of off-campus student affairs. Guided by a dedicated UKTGA Steering Group, Chair Cooper Healey expressed enthusiasm for the event, stating, "This was an exceptional opportunity to shed light on the pressing issues surrounding town and gown relations and to delve into leading practice. We recognise that these roles are often carried out by individuals working independently, making our network and events all the more valuable in fostering a sense of community among practitioners."

Established in 2014, the UKTGA has provided a framework for shaping conversations in this arena for the past ten years. There is much more to come! Building on the continued success of these discussions, the UKTGA is currently finalizing plans for its 2024 programme of learning and networking events. More information to follow!