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Students bring 'bling' to UK Year of the Volunteer
21 February 2005

London: The Student Volunteering England (SVE) is today holding a discussion called "The Bling Factor" to mark the launch of Student Volunteering Week, which has been organized as part of the Year of the Volunteer campaign.

The week will feature a host of events plus the presentation of the Matt Spencer Award for Outstanding Student Volunteer.

SVE director, Mr Graham Allcott, said "More than 42,000 student volunteers currently contribute time worth £42 million to the economy in this country. But we feel this could be a lot higher.

"To launch Student Volunteering Week, we are holding a debate on the future of volunteering and whether it's the image or the quality of the opportunities themselves that need an overhaul."

The discussion, featuring leaders from the voluntary sector and education, was prompted by recent consultations with students on behalf of the Russell Commission, which will produce its report on youth volunteering within the next few weeks.

The event will include a showcase of innovative student volunteering projects and the launch of a guide to working with student volunteers for small organizations.

The debate coincides with the Year of the Volunteer's "Youth and Children month" which is being co-ordinated by Community Service Volunteers (CSV) and the Volunteering England consortium and backed by the Home Office.