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Online Volunteering - how did it start ?

More often than not, the world – and its problems – feel really, really big. We’re bombarded with a constant stream of heavy, hard things and although there is always good around us, sometimes it feels hard to find. Harder still, has been finding a way to contribute to that good; especially on a scale where we feel like we’re truly making a difference. Then COVID happened. The pandemic brought about a truly impressive switch to all things virtual. Concerts and movies were released directly to people on their couches; everything from pre-kindergarten to Doctoral programs moved to online; how we socialized and celebrated was reimagined.

Why not doing the same for volunteering ? Couldn’t we make it more accessible too ? What do we do with that statement ? Sit on it, ponder it and let the opportunity to make a difference pass us by (as it so often does)? No, no. We say let’s start today; wherever we are, however we can, and get busy changing the world. The concept of volunteering virtually or remotely has been around for quite some time. The pandemic simply served as a catalyst to fine-tune the existing opportunities and to make other volunteer activities that had always been viewed as in-person work, now possible from homes around the globe. Take a look at just a few ways to remotely make a difference below:

  • Youth Services: iMentor, Oakwood Educational Foundation

  • Language Services: Translators Without Borders, Tarjimly,

  • Disability Assistance: Be My Eyes

  • Crisis Aide: I’m Alive, RAINN, The Trevor Project, Tell

  • Senior Citizens: Caring Calls

We won’t claim that every good option were provided; no, we just scratched the surface of what’s available to you! Still, if you’ve read and pondered, hemmed and hawed without finding an activity that really speaks to you, then might we suggest turning inward and asking yourself what are you good at?

  • Graphic design? Why not offer your services to the nonprofits you love?

  • Architecture? Consider offering your services to organizations building schools in developing countries.

  • IT? Did you know that web design, coding and overall technical issues are some of the biggest – and priciest roadblocks that nonprofits face? Lend a hand where you can.

The world is a big, big place with countless problems – and countless ways to lovingly fight back against those problems. We hope you’ve found some inspiration today to get involved wherever you’re at, with whatever skills you bring to the table, and we hope you’ve realized that you are needed as you are – from the serving line at a soup kitchen to behind the screen on your couch. Thank you for choosing to make a change.

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