21 April 2012

Volunteering With and For Children: Part 2

Do you want to Volunteer?

It is Global Youth Service Day this weekend! I posted about that yesterday in Part 1 on the theme of volunteering with and for children. I also gave some details about the Service Innovation Summit, which I recently took part in. As well as all this, it will be the fifth anniversary of my organisation, CHW, tomorrow, so no wonder the subject of volunteering has been on my mind!

Although it might be a bit last minute to find a project for this weekend, volunteering at any time is a very positive thing! Here are some links to help you get started. Some have general volunteering opportunities, but you can search specifically for placements with children's projects, if that is what you particularly want to do.

Searching for volunteer placements or projects:
  1. Idealist - I post CHW's volunteering opportunities there. Lots of organisations use this site and there are many types of opportunities you can choose from.
  2. Betterplace - One of CHW's volunteers told me about this site. So far I have just posted CHW's appeals for donations, but some organisations advertise for volunteers (which I may also do in the future!) and it is worth taking a look.
  3. 7 Billion Actions - Organisations have posted their profiles here, with contact details. CHW has been contacted by new volunteers through this site and there are lots of organisations you can look through, to find one you like.
  4. Junction49 - This is a site for people aged 13-25 in the UK. It supports young people in setting up their own projects and other young people on the site can volunteer and help out with these initiatives. The site was recommended to me by the Volunteer Services Unit at UCL, when I was a student there.

Links from the Service Innovation Summit:
  1. Cuenta Conmigo Blog- This Blog was set up after the Summit and has resources and ideas to do with volunteerism - the focus is on Spain, but there are some blog entries in English too, which may be of interest. 
  2. Community Project Grant - Spain only. This is a competition for a grant to finance a volunteer project in Spain. The deadline to apply is 20 May 2012.
  3. Global Service Leaders Network - an online community for leaders from around the world who are concerned with volunteerism.

Volunteer with CHW:
  1. Your skills! - If you have any skill you want to share with us to help support the children we work with, please let me know. We have volunteers who help publicise appeals and arrange events, as well as those who do translations and have helped with designing our logo! See more on CHW's 'Get Involved' page, under the 'volunteering' section.
  2. Cake Sales - To celebrate CHW's 5th 'birthday' we are hoping as many people as possible will have cake sales to support our work throughout the year! If you are able to arrange a cake sale at your work, university, school or community, please get in touch!
  3. International Volunteering - Some of our partner organisations in Argentina, Ghana, Romania and South Africa run international volunteer schemes. They set the prices, so they are cheaper than doing placements with big gap year companies. I can put you in touch with the local organisations, if you want to volunteer abroad.
  4. Pass on our links! - This is an easy way to volunteer, if you want to help but don't have a lot of time. I have posted our two current appeals on both betterplace.org and kapipal.com. More info about these projects are on the appeal pages and to be successful CHW really needs people to pass on the links. If you are able to share them, by email, facebook, twitter, on your blog, or any other way you can think of, it would be a big help! Here are the links:
         Playground Project in Ghana on betterplace and on kapipal.
         Children's Music Therapy Project in Argentina on betterplace and on kapipal.

If you have other useful links for volunteering, please do add them as a comment below. I hope you find the volunteer opportunity that you are looking for!

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