Often, there are so many volunteer opportunities to choose. Finding the right one is important. Here are some helpful hints:
Before offering to volunteer, think about:
- Why you want to volunteer
- What type of voluntary roles you would like (and wouldn't like!) to do
- What skills, experience and level of involvement you can offer
- Other practicalities, such as where and when you want to volunteer
- How much time you can give
Pick An Issue You Really Care About
What are some community problems that concern you? If your choices include broad issues like "Health" or "environment," you may want to narrow it down to specific parts of the problem.
Be Aware Of Your Needs
One of the most important considerations you should think about before volunteering are your needs.
What do you want to gain from volunteering? This answer varies from person to person and no answer is wrong. Some motivations include:
- wanting to "make a difference"
- using a skill or talent
- gaining professional experience
- expressing religious faith
- seeking to meet new people
- achieving personal growth
- gaining a more balanced life to achieving personal growth
- gaining a more balanced life to giving something back.
There are lots of reasons people volunteer. Be aware of yours.
Think About Your Skills.
Are there skills that you have that you'd like to use in a volunteer opportunity?
Ask the Volunteer Centre for ideas
Email Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her on 066 7117966. As Placement Officer she will be more than happy to give ideas.
Look at Organisations Needs
Organisations submit immediate needs to the Volunteer Centre. Review their needs on Kerry Volunteer Centres online database and get some ideas of the possibilities.
Some agencies have set age limits for their volunteers and you may be required to let the volunteer co-ordinator know your age.
For many people the biggest barrier to volunteering is a busy schedule. However, most of us really can fit volunteering into our lives. There is no minimum time requirement - you can put in an hour a day, an hour a month, or an hour a year. Look for holes in your schedule or combine volunteering with other important activities like family time, or a hobby (e.g. photography, playing the piano, etc).
Remember to pick a convenient location – sticking with a volunteer opportunity will be hard if getting there is part of the problem.
You should enjoy your volunteering experience. Pick something that you think will be fun, fulfilling and enjoyable.