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Jess Rea, former St Oswald's Student Volunteer, lands her dream job in Australia

Volunteering at St Oswald’s helps Jess land her dream job Down Under

St Oswald’s Hospice is supporting National Student Volunteer Week, which runs from 19th – 25th of February, by saying a huge thank you to all of the student volunteers, and encouraging others who may be interested to get involved. It’s also an opportunity to celebrate those who have found volunteering at St Oswald’s to be a springboard for success.

Jess Rea, originally from North Walbottle, and a former student volunteer in St Oswald’s Communications Team, landed her dream job working as Marketing Officer for a leading rural retail business in Australia.

Jess said;

I got into volunteering with St Oswald’s after my grandfather received care from the inpatient unit. I hosted a fundraising event with Newcastle Falcons rugby club which raised nearly £8000, after which I began to volunteer in the Communications Team.

“It was a great addition to my degree to have the marketing experience. I believe it added value and relevancy to my CV and I can now put this experience into practice out here in Australia. I’m lead Marketing Officer at a leading rural retail business, Pursehouse Rural, with 16 stores across Australia.


“Volunteering at St Oswald’s enabled me to stand out from other students and showed I was able to manage my time effectively, work as part of a team and put my degree into practice in the workplace. 


“I would definitely say that volunteering at St Oswald’s is worth the time and extra effort. You certainly get out what you put in. The team at St Oswald’s are amazing and it is a positive and rewarding work place. I learned a lot about myself and my outlook on my own life and goals just by being around the staff there. Their positivity and energy is inspiring. 

Laura-Jane Todd, also a former student volunteer in the Communication Team at St Oswald’s, saw the role as an opportunity to develop her CV, and felt the experience was vital in developing the skills which led her on her way to her current job as a Copy Writer at a Marketing Agency in Newcastle.

Laura-Jane said;


If someone was thinking about volunteering I would definitely recommend it. It’s something different that perhaps when you get into full-time work, you might not get the opportunity to do as much. On top of all that, it makes you feel good! It’s nice to give back and feel as though you’re helping such a great cause, even if it is just for a few hours a week

St Oswald’s Hospice currently has over 1200 volunteers, of which more than 200 are under the age of 25. With the continued support of volunteers, the Hospice is able to provide specialist care for children, young adults, patients and families from across the North East.

Christine Ward, Volunteer Services Manager at St Oswald's Hospice, said;


I would like to say a huge thank you to all our student volunteers for taking the time out of their busy schedule. They are a valued part of our team and we are very grateful for all their hard work and continued support.

“The most popular positions with students are usually ward helpers, shop assistants and fundraising support. However, there are plenty of opportunities across all areas of the Hospice, from communications and events to gardening, every little helps.

“Volunteering not only helps the Hospice but it goes a long way to helping the student as well. It can boost your CV from good to great. Using your spare time in this way can show initiative, independence and dedication, all qualities future employers look for in their candidates. Volunteering can also give you the key skills, training and experience employers are looking for. In today’s competitive jobs market this can make all the difference.

“And of course, there is the social side to consider. Volunteering can be hugely rewarding and give you a sense of personal gratification. So you feel good whilst doing good! By giving back to your local community, you can make a positive impact on someone’s life.

For more information on volunteering with St Oswald’s, email volunteer@stoswaldsuk.org or click here.