Volunteering to gain transferable skills
Volunteering is a great way of helping those in need or giving something back to the community. It can also provide you with an opportunity to learn new skills which may then be transferable to other roles.
If you feel stuck in a career rut, fancy changing direction or feel opportunities are lacking in your current job then it may be worth exploring what volunteering opportunities are out there. It doesn’t necessarily have to be within a healthcare remit; you may be able to pick up skills like budgeting, research, advocacy, organising or leadership skills, and then later put these into practice within a healthcare role. (See our guidance on transferable skills for more details.)
Either way, your newfound skills and experience can be put to good use and will always looks great on a CV.
In terms of personal skills, evidence suggests that volunteering brings benefits not only to the people being helped, but also the volunteers themselves, aiding with things like self-esteem, confidence, self-worth, sense of purpose, social integration, and overall quality of life.
There are volunteering opportunities all over the UK, in a range of different settings. You can explore some of the links below, but the list is by no means exhaustive.
- Do-it website
- Volunteering Matters - for young, older and disabled volunteers
- VSO website for overseas placements
- local Volunteer Centre
- Reach - for volunteers with specific skills
- Volunteering Wales website
- Volunteer Scotland website
- Volunteer now website (Northern Ireland)
IMPORTANT: If you’re on the NMC register and you volunteer, you may need to have an appropriate indemnity arrangement in place.. Please see the RCN indemnity scheme document for more details at www.rcn.org.uk/indemnity.