Do you ever feel like you want to make a difference and start volunteering, but just don’t know where to start? We have made a step-by-step plan for you on becoming a volunteer!
- First of all, think about what is interesting to you personally. Are you concerned about the well-being of animals or are you passionate about womens’ rights or global warming? Once you have found a field you genuinely care about, it will be a lot easier to find the right place to volunteer at. There are also organisations available that can connect you to a variety of projects, such as Indigo Volunteers (https://www.indigovolunteers.org/), who have multiple opportunities to contribute in the humanitarian spectrum through their extensive network.
- Once you have made up your mind on the field you would like to volunteer in, it is time to make a schedule for yourself. How many hours per week are you able to or willing to spend on volunteering? Decide how much time you want to spend on per week or per month and make sure you can actually commit to this. If you work at an organisation, keep in mind that they really count on you and your commitment just like they would if you were working there, even if it is on a volunteer basis.
- When you have found your passion and know how much time you have to volunteer, you can go contact all the organisations that you are interested in. Tell them about yourself, your goals and what you have to offer to them. Naturally they also need to see whether you are a good fit for their organisation and in what way you can help them most. Are you specialised in creating content, are you passionate about providing basic human neccesities, or do you enjoy playing games with children? Definitely mention any useful skill or previous experience in your motivation letter and CV. If you have been in contact with multiple organisations, you can simply choose the one you are most comfortable with.
- Through volunteering at an organisation you might meet some people that have volunteered at other organisations doing different types of jobs as well. Talk to them to gain even more knowledge about your field, it might be useful in developing yourself in terms of where you fit in best!
- Take care of yourself! Make sure you are staying healthy both physically and mentally, because if you are not taking care of yourself enough, it makes it harder to provide help to others. If volunteering is mentally getting tough, make sure you talk to other people in the same situation, or to someone you trust, or even a professional.
- After soaking up as much knowledge as you can, you could try to raise more awareness about the field you are passionate about! You might be able to get other people excited about helping in any way they can, whether it is through being present, donating, or just talking about your cause.
Stay tuned to read about the experiences from our own OCC volunteers in Greece and Spain!