In honor of National Volunteer Week, April 23-29, this article is going to provide you with more information on volunteering, both on campus and wherever else you might be. I know being a college student comes with plenty of stress on its own, especially if you already have a job as well. But I really think volunteering is an important aspect to life- it does feel good to help out someone else, and hey, if nothing else, it looks great on resumes, right? I know people who want to volunteer, but don’t know how to start or where to go. Some are worried that it’ll be too far away, or they won’t be able to get there, because they don’t have a car on campus. Well, a lot of the places I’ve checked out have been easy to get to on a bus, and most of the time an organization will be flexible about how many hours you volunteer and will try and work with your schedule.
That being said, there are many volunteer opportunities available in the Twin Cities area (and at home, if you want to volunteer during the summer!). But how do you find one that you’ll enjoy? A simple google search will probably work, but there is one good service available to you on campus, the Career and Community Learning Center, located in 345 Fraser Hall on East Bank. After you fill out a form, set up an appointment with one of their advisors, and the CCLC will help match you with a volunteer opportunity. They’ll give you all the contact information and you can set up the times you want to volunteer with organization. (Their website is at the end, check it out!)
If you don’t want to go through those steps, you can contact an organization directly, if you know of somewhere looking for volunteers- ask around and talk to friends and see if they help somewhere or if they know of an organization you can contact.
The last resource I have for you is a website I’ve done some searching on before, www.volunteermatch.org. This one will be helpful if you would rather figure something out on your own. On this website, you can search by area code, area of interest for volunteering, whether you want to help with children, seniors, hunger, GLBT rights, or 25 other choices. A brief summary/description of the position and all contact information is provided. Like I mentioned earlier, this website will also help you if you’re looking to volunteer somewhere at home over the summer, too!
Hopefully this information was helpful, and if you have any questions, just post them up and I’ll do my best to find you an answer!