STAR groups provide welcoming spaces and practical support to refugees and people seeking asylum in their local communities. In partnership with organisations across the UK, STAR groups run student-led projects – from English conversation clubs to drop-in centres. Each year, they recruit thousands of student volunteers for these projects and to support the work of vital local charities.

We are making a difference by running essential projects such as:

  • English conversation clubs
  • Homework clubs in schools and refugee organisations
  • Sports clubs
  • Drop-in centres
  • Women’s groups
  • Youth clubs

‘At first I had nowhere to go and when I first came I was a beginner. Now [I’m] preparing for IELTS English exam. I have met many new people of different backgrounds, I learned a lot of aspects of the UK. If we don’t have this place, I might leave Cardiff.’ 

-Refugee attendee at Cardiff STAR drop in & English Conversation Club


As usual I have enjoyed the whole lesson and you have given me a positive energy for the rest of the day. I have, as always, learnt so many things.
– Refugee attendee at Sunderland STAR Conversation Club

If you are interested in setting up a volunteering project in your community, contact Bekah Lucking, Volunteering Project Coordinator for advice, support and training.

Why volunteer?

It’s an opportunity to break out of the student bubble and make a real difference in your local community.  Life as a refugee in the UK can be lonely, full of upheaval and uncertainty. You can provide a practical welcome by sharing your time, skills and friendship to help people rebuild their lives in the UK. Here’s what some of our volunteers have to say:

During my time at university, STAR was undoubtedly one of the most fulfilling projects I was a part of. Being able to work with passionate people on a range of different things was always exciting. Most of all, it was brilliant to be able to make a difference in the local community.
- Nottingham STAR
STAR has given me an opportunity to directly help [people seeking asylum]. I think that STAR excels in giving hands-on volunteering experience, directly with the people who need help.
- Birmingham STAR
Attending Homework Club, and then taking over the role as coordinator, has been a massive part of my university experience. Getting out of the Clifton/Redland bubble to reach out and work with a community I would otherwise have no connection to has been extremely valuable. All the kids, parents and volunteers at the Somali Resource Centre are amazing people. They have been welcoming and supportive, and I feel really grateful to have worked alongside them. It added another dimension to my everyday uni-life…
- Bristol STAR, Homework Club Coordinator
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