Five Ways to Volunteer

Leejoo Hwang
August 8, 2020

What comes to mind when you think of volunteering?

Soup kitchens, food banks, and groceries delivery during a pandemic may be the few that you thought of. While there are a handful of ways to give back to your community and push forward movements and causes you care about, we’ve broken down volunteer opportunities into five different types: Advising, Project, Events, Board Members, and Casual Volunteering. 


MeaningfulWork team doing beach cleanup!

1. Advising


Do you not have a lot of time, but bring a lot of expertise to the table? Advising a nonprofit may be a great way to give back. Often times nonprofits find themselves stretched in managing various different operational tasks and may not be an expert in an area like marketing for example. Advising gives nonprofits a chance to learn what works and doesn’t and provides them with some clarity on how to navigate their organization with best practices. 


Examples: 
  • Providing tips and advice on best practices for using social media to reach new volunteers and donors. 
  • Being a soundboard for a nonprofit to bounce ideas 


2. Project 

If you like getting your hands dirty and seeing your time and effort progressively contribute to a bigger cause, Project type Opportunities are just for you! When you’re passionate about something and you want to see change happen, you often find yourself giving a few hours or even weekends to support the cause that matters to you. Project opportunities are a great way to bring your time and expertise and play an integral role in achieving the nonprofit’s goal. 


Examples: 
  • Creating and managing social media posts to promote an upcoming fundraising gala. 
  • Support building a website for a project 

3. Event

Events are often fun and exciting but require a lot of help to ensure that they run smoothly. Or sometimes, volunteering itself is an event to give back collectively in a group. If you enjoy events and want to give back, event opportunities are the way to go.


Examples: 
  • Speaking on your expertise to a group of students. 
  • Volunteering to pick up garbage on Earth day!


4. Board Members

Volunteering from time to time is great, but if you would like to have more responsibilities and you’re passionate about a specific cause area or have come to love a nonprofit, we like to think becoming a board member is the endgame of volunteering. As a board member, your responsibilities include strategically steering the organization and becoming strong advocates for your organization's cause to advance its mission. However, do keep in mind board membership often requires your commitment of 1-2 years. 


Example:
  • Sit as one of the board members for a nonprofit and a cause you love. 


5. Casual Volunteering

This type of volunteering is likely what you’re most familiar with and often in person. Volunteering at soup kitchens, food banks, and groceries delivery all fall under casual volunteering falls. For us, it’s our newest type of opportunity we accommodate on MeaningfulWork because we started out with virtual and skilled volunteer opportunities to work around the pandemic. 


Examples: 
  • Food distribution
  • Volunteer driver 


Regardless of how you decide to give your time, I hope next time you think about volunteering, you are reminded of the many different ways to give back to your community. If you’ve only volunteered casually, perhaps you’ll also enjoy project and board member type opportunities. If you’d like to volunteer but you are mindful of Covid, you can check out advising, project, event, and board member opportunities which can all be done virtually. 


Start Volunteering Today!


I hope this article was helpful for you. If you have any feedback or thoughts feel free to reach out to me at hello@meaningful.ca