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Getting Started with Community Service and Volunteering

Although both terms of community service and volunteering have a slight difference, both of them share a similarity: to provide help or assistance without getting paid. Everyone knows that helping other people won’t only give you good karma, but it also gives you a good feeling. There is a sense of accomplishment when you can help others and how your work means so much to them.

However, most people are overwhelmed about the idea.  They don’t really know where to start. Most of them are idealistic by thinking about joining popular and big organization. But you can actually start small – start from your surroundings. By starting small, you can work slowly. You should be able to progress gradually so you can make a significant impact to your community.

Volunteering and Future Career

Have you ever thought that your volunteer action can actually provide a solid career guidance for your future? You see, when you help out with different activities or organizations, you are basically trying different kinds of expertise and skills. This opportunity allows you to ‘try’ different jobs so you know which one suits you the best.

Volunteering and Future Career
Volunteering and Future Career

If you are still doubtful about your future career, volunteering or community service can help. Do you love working with kids? Try a volunteer work at the local daycare or YMCA. Have a passion in environment? You want to look at Greenpeace or similar organization around your neighborhood. Wondering what teaching would be like? Why not volunteering at school? Want to be a professional vet or doctor?  You can start from the local animal shelter or hospital. The options are limitless, but you need to know where to start.

How to Help?

Different people have different passion. Some people like to work with kids while some can’t stand them. Some people are great at teaching and sharing knowledge, while some don’t. You need to figure out how you want to provide the assistance. By leading a group? By teaching? By organizing events? And what about the environment: do you like outdoors better than indoors, or vice versa? Are you comfortable with peace and quietness, like in a library, or do you prefer working in a busy place like in hospital? After all, you do want to help with a genuine smile on your face, right? And it makes the job so much easier too!

Volunteering and Future Career
Volunteering and Future Career

Collect Information

You need to start collecting information about the work or the program. Talk to the guidance counselors at school – they can be a good starting point. Not to mention that many schools have already had their community service and volunteer programs, so you can join and be a part of them. Have a discussion with your parents. Are they okay with your intention to take part in the programs? If your friends have joined any volunteer work or community group activity, you can also start there. In short, try to get as many as trusted info and insight.

This is how to start your volunteer work, if you are sure that you want to do this. Afterwards, things should be easier and you should be able to choose which work or which service suits your preference.

The Best Places to Do Community Service
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The Best Places to Do Community Service

Everyone knows that taking part in a community service can be beneficial, especially for your social skills and social connections. Community service is an unpaid work that is done by either a group of people or a person that can help and benefit others. Some community services can be focused on certain places. And there are some of the best places to help others.

Schools

This is one of the most common and popular places where community services often happen. There are many volunteers and many programs available. You can also volunteer at a different school, your own, or the one that you used to go to. If you are creative or enjoy teaching, and you like working with teenagers or kids, then this would be the ideal option. This is also a great pick if you are thinking about having a career in education. The example work to do is supervising programs after school, creating murals, chaperoning, or tutoring students.

Community Service at school
Community Service at school

Hospitals

Hospitals often hold community services and have various activities. If you like being in a fast-paced and busy environment, you aren’t afraid of diseases, or you are thinking about having a career in the health and medical subject, then this can be your greatest option. You will start slow and have a few duties. But if you decide to have a long-term relationship at the place, you may be given more responsibilities. You can start from playing or interacting with young patients, transporting patients to different rooms, stocking the medical supplies, or delivering gifts to patients.

Nursing Homes

Many retirement communities and nursing homes depend on volunteers to help with their residents. Volunteers can organize fun events or keep the residents active. This chance is good for those who have outgoing personality and love spending times (and interacting) with senior citizens. You can host events such as playing dadu online, bingo nights or dance nights, help the residents with their daily activities, or reading to them.

Food Banks

Whether it is food depositories, Soup Kitchen, or Food Banks, these are also the common places where poor families or homeless people go to. They are places that arrange food distribution or accept food donation for the poor and homeless people. They often depend on volunteers to manage their work, especially in reducing hunger and distributing food. Some often serve meals on the site – some even grow (and manage) their own food.

Community Service food banks
Community Service food banks

It would be perfect for you to work in Food Bank if you like gardening or cooking. If you like helping the poor without having to have so much interaction with their beneficiaries, this would also be the perfect opportunity. You can work by delivering meals, organizing food drives, cooking at the kitchen, or sorting food donation.

Animal Shelter

Volunteers can help the operation and the running of the shelters, since they only have small budgets and yet they have to take care of the many animals. The volunteers really matter because it can reduce their work load. This place is perfect for animal lovers or those who want to have a career within animal care industry. The example work may include walking the dogs, interviewing potential owners, providing and doing basic vet care, cleaning the cages, and feeding the animals.

These places are the common options for community services because there are different activities to do. You should ask around and decide where you want to go based on your interest and common activities to do.