If you’re looking for opportunities to gain experience in the charity sector, you may be wondering how to find a volunteering or internship opportunity near you. For many people, the thought of traveling to another city regularly is out of the question. In some cases, this may be because they have responsibilities at home or they live in an area with few opportunities. In other situations, it might simply be that there aren’t that many non-profit organizations operating in their hometown. Luckily, this is 2019, so sourcing opportunities shouldn’t be too difficult. Accessing the internet opens up a world of possibilities when it comes to volunteering and internships and locating opportunities that are accessible from home within local commuting distance from your house. Here are a few places you could look:
Google is the first place to start when you’re looking for something. Many people rely on Google to provide the answers to their questions and so it’s no surprise that it can be a useful tool when you’re looking for information on how to find charity work.
First, search for non-profit organizations in your area on Google. This will show you which organizations are operating in your city and what they do. Then, if you want to find out how to volunteer for one of those organizations, simply search for the name of the organization plus the words “volunteer” or “internship.” You’ll likely find all sorts of useful information about the types of roles and programs they have, whether you have to be qualified, and how to sign up.
If you want to look beyond your city, try searching for the name of your state followed by “non-profit organizations.” Chances are you’ll find a list of local charities and NGOs. From there, you can follow the same steps as above to find out how to get involved.
Volunteering Organizations Near You
If you don’t have luck finding opportunities with Google, try searching for “volunteer organizations near you” or “volunteering opportunities near me.” You can use your city or county’s name or your neighborhood to narrow your search. You can also use your state, followed by the words “volunteering” and “nonprofit organizations.”
There are thousands of non-profit organizations across the country. Some of them organize large-scale volunteer events, while others run smaller, more local programs. Finding volunteer opportunities near you is as easy as plugging your ZIP code into a search engine. You can also use a resource like VolunteerMatch, which allows you to enter your location and desired skills to find opportunities that are suitable for you.
University Research Groups
If you’re a student at a university, you may have the option to join one of the many research groups the institution offers. These groups often conduct research with a focus on solving real-world problems. You may be able to apply to one of these groups to gain valuable experience that can be put on your CV.
To find research groups near you, simply plug your university’s name into a search engine. You may want to narrow your search by specifying the department or focus of the group. If you’re still in high school, you may be able to contact your school’s research center or department to ask about opportunities.
Professional Networking Events
If you’re looking for a quick way to get your foot in the door in the charity or non-profit sector, professional networking events could be the ticket. Many organizations host networking events that are open to both members of the public and prospective employees. These events are often listed on websites such as Eventbrite or Meetup. You can also use Google to search for events in your area that are related to the non-profit sector.
At these events, you can make connections with people in the sector and find out about opportunities. You may also be able to sign up for an internship or volunteering position at the event.
Bottom line: Take action!
If you want to find charity work near you, start by thinking about what you’re passionate about. What issues do you care about and want to help solve? From there, use the internet to find opportunities near you that match your skills and interests. Put yourself out there and be proactive about finding opportunities.
Don’t wait for an opportunity to land in your lap. Instead, make it happen by reaching out to organizations that interest you. You can also make yourself more employable in general by learning new skills. If you don’t have work experience, consider enrolling in a course related to the sector you’d like to work in. This way, you’ll be able to demonstrate your passion and dedication to the field.