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Humanities student becomes Student Volunteer of the Year

(18 May 2017)

Congratulations to Lucia Banjo, from the School of Environment, Education and Development, who has become this year’s Student Volunteer of the Year.

Lucia, who is set to graduate with BA (Hons) in Management, Leadership and Leisure this year, established the Big Change Society as a way to connect and engage students with the Big Change campaign. Big Change is part of Manchester’s city-wide approach to tackling homelessness and encourages members of the public to consider alternative giving: donating money to the Big Change fund, rather than giving money, food or items directly to rough sleepers on the streets.

Lucia had been volunteering on the Big Change campaign and helped to raise the profile of the campaign by attending consultations with councillors on the Manchester Homelessness Charter and business meetings with CEOs of local companies to acquire funding. She also met with local charities and used this community research to inform her contributions, including the development of the ‘Street Support’ app, an online hub bringing together information on the city’s homelessness services.

As Chair of Big Change Society, Lucia leads fundraising activities, promotes responsible giving through student events, and signposts to relevant volunteering opportunities. She works hard to make connections with other students interested in homelessness, and maintains a good working relationship with the key charity partners so she can identify opportunities, for example ambassador training and events where students meet people with experience of homelessness. She also sets a good example to her committee by taking part in events alongside students, such as a fundraising sleep-out which raised money for the Big Change.

Lucia also took part in the Team Uganda project in summer 2015, working with fellow students and charity SALVE International to provide better opportunities for street children in Uganda.

  • Find out more about all the volunteers recognised at the awards on StaffNet.