Volunteering Action Plan

(This post is part of our 2014 Resolve to Evolve program.)

Volunteering is good for your community, good for your health, and good for your career.

But there are so many different ways to serve—from every Sunday morning at your place or worship to swinging a hammer with Habitat for Humanity once a year—it can be hard to know how to get started.

1. First, ask yourself if there is something specific you want to do.

For example,  do I want…

…to make it better around where I live

…to meet people who are different from me

…to try something new

…to do something with my spare time

…to see a different way of life and new places

…to have a go at the type of work I might want to do as a full-time job

…to do more with my interests and hobbies

…to do something I’m good at

The best way to volunteer is to match your personality and interests. Having answers to these questions will help you narrow down your search.

 

2. Research opportunities

Here are some places to start:

Volunteers of America

United Way

HandsOn Network

Red Cross 

Community Volunteer Connections

 

Closer to home:

Local food shelf

Your child or grandchild’s school

Your place of worship

Local library

Your city’s Parks & Recreation Department

Hospital and/or nursing home

 

3. Sign up!

This one’s easy. Once you figured out what kind of volunteer work you want to do, who you want to give your time to, make it official and ink that time on your calendar and theirs.

Johanna Price

Johanna Price is a writer and editor living in the Twin Cities. Follow her on Twitter @johannaprice.