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This article analyses the knowledge, perception and participation of university students in NGOs. The social group analysed has a very positive perception towards volunteering as well as a life situation and preparation that, in theory, facilitates their participation in such activities. However, their effective participation is much lower than the levels shown by potential volunteers who would like to participate. We have identified two elements that stand between the possibility and reality: the lack of information and the time available. In this sense, universities appear as institutions capable of connecting the needs and demands of NGOs and students.