1 virtual internships
A volunteer is someone who works of their own free will and without monetary reward to benefit the community. Volunteers have an enormous impact on the health and well-being of communities worldwide. Volunteering covers many varied and different activities, from visiting an elderly or sick neighbour; getting involved in a youth club, scouting or guiding club; assisting a charity with its finances or administration; helping someone to read and write; the list is endless. Anyone can volunteer. It doesn't matter whether they are young or old, male or female, able bodied or disabled, in paid work or not, there is something they can do. Some people volunteer a few times a year when they have spare time, others give a regular commitment of several hours per week and some even volunteer on a full time basis.
- Volunteers deliver critical services—from serving as volunteer fire fighters or participating in search and rescue, to delivering meals to homebound seniors or homeless youth, to manning the phone lines at domestic violence and sexual assault centres
- Volunteers help to keep neighbourhoods, streets, parks, rivers, green spaces, and water clean and safe for everyone
- Volunteers tutor, teach, mentor, coach, and support young people with everything from math homework to dealing with personal crises to football and soccer tourneys
- Volunteers walk dogs, pet cats, clean cages, help with adoptions and feedings, and contribute veterinary expertise to organizations like animal shelters and wildlife rehabilitation centres
- Volunteers educate the public on health and safety
- Doctors and nurses donate time and medical knowledge to free clinics and natural/civil disaster areas worldwide
- Volunteers lead tours at museums and historical societies, and ensure that arts and cultural festivals—from small-scale gatherings to massive multi-stage concerts—run smoothly
- Volunteers build houses and schools, dig wells, and repair infrastructure around the globe
- Help with office tasks, write down information or input data, sort data, design hand-out booklets
- The range of tasks of a volunteer is endless and largely depends on an organisation where a person works
Key skills for volunteer:
- Passionate about your work
- Willingness to learn
- Team player
- Upbeat and fun personality
- Time management
Average salary (2013):
The United Kingdom: Unpaid, but work expenses are reimbursed
The United States of America: Unpaid, but work expenses are reimbursed
Australia: Unpaid, but work expenses are reimbursed
Qualifications and training required:
Generally no specific qualification or training is required in order to volunteer. Most important is willingness to learn new skills. Many organisations provide a high level of support and training, to ensure that volunteers are able to carry out their tasks in a safe way. Usually there is someone available if a volunteer needs additional help and there is often further training to help volunteers develop in their role.
However there are organizations that require volunteers to have field specific training or education (can be last year students). For example this may be important in health care, social care and fundraising.
Volunteering is also a great way to help find paid work. It is a great way of getting into a working environment whilst helping others. If your resume is looking a little short because you don't have much work experience, volunteering is an excellent way to learn new skills and gain genuine work experience at the same time. Volunteering can be valuable, eye-opening and enjoyable experience. It can help decide on the future career path.