Unique places to volunteer
Some (possibly) non-traditional places to look for volunteer opportunities:
If you’re looking for a place that’s close to home, why not consider getting involved in your community league? There are always lots of opportunities to serve on the executive, on committees, for projects, or at events. It’s a great place to get started on a board. Many of our municipal politicians got their start on community league boards. Even if you don’t have any political aspirations, volunteering with your community league is a great way to get to know your neighbours and learn more about the community in which you preside. To find out which community league you live in, visit www.efcl.org.
This new trend in vacationing and volunteering is called “voluntourism”. It’s not free, you still have to pay for your trip, but how it works is you find a country you’d like to travel to or a volunteer role you’d like to pursue. Some companies will make all the arrangements for you while others will do everything but arrange for your airfare. This is a great way to combine volunteering with travel for those of you who get bored laying on a beach or sightseeing while on vacation – but be sure to do your research as there are some companies that don’t have stellar reputations.
Although not a “non-traditional” way to find opportunities, Goz Around is included because they are the only site that lists requests for help from individuals as well as non-profits! There may be a senior who is looking for help with yard work, or a college student who is new to Edmonton and needs help moving. These requests can be found on this site. If this makes you uncomfortable, be sure to read about their “Trust and Safety” section on their site.
There are students and researchers who are looking for people to assist them in their study or for clinical trials. Try local post-secondary institutes, Alberta Health Services and of course, there’s always Google!
Volunteering could mean shoveling your neighbour’s driveway, offering to walk your Auntie’s dog, looking after a relative’s house while they’re on vacation or watching your friend’s children for an afternoon. When it comes down to it, volunteering is really about helping.