You can create change in your community as a skills-based volunteer.
Skills-based (or pro-bono) volunteers provide work-related knowledge and expertise — skills normally used to generate income — free of charge to a nonprofit organization.
Examples of skills-based volunteering include:
- Teaching a class
- Framing a house
- Developing a website
- Financial advising or book-keeping
Skills-based volunteerism utilizes the skills, experience, talents and education of volunteers and matches them with the needs of nonprofits. By leveraging all types of knowledge and expertise, it helps build and sustain nonprofits’ capacity to achieve their missions successfully. Individual skilled volunteers may offer their particular expertise to a nonprofit agency, while corporate SBV involves employee volunteers working on projects for a nonprofit organization through a structured program developed and managed by their employer.
So you’ve gone to the classes, pulled the all-nighters, joined the clubs and gotten the advising – but your college experience isn’t yet complete. That’s where volunteering and service-learning comes in.
Getting involved in volunteering and service-learning can:
- Beef up your resume
- Ensure a great way to hang out with your friends
- Show you new places, people, and things to do
- Improve the community and people’s lives
And volunteering doesn’t just mean raking leaves or picking up trash – there are lots of unique opportunities to uses your skills.
When looking for volunteer opportunities, there are a few things to consider, including your schedule, your interests, and why you want to volunteer.
Thoughtfully answering those questions will help you filter through all the options and find the best project(s) for you and ensure get the most of your volunteer experience.
Some of the benefits of volunteering include:
- school credit
- college or career experience
- fun with friends
- help others
- explore a new hobby
- have a real impact on your community
- all of the above!
Volunteering as a family provides children with a great start on civic engagement, and kids who volunteer are more likely to continue volunteering as adults and carry on the tradition with their own children!
Five great reasons to volunteer as a family:
- Volunteering with your kids can be…
- a chance to make new friends
- a good workout
- a way to pass along your values
- an opportunity to learn new skills
- fun and inspiring
Creative family volunteering ideas:
- Grow a garden and donate the harvest to a food pantry or a neighbor in need.
- Have kids pick out one personal care item a week at the store, then donate items at the end of the month.
- Decorate cards and send cheerful messages to residents at local senior living facilities
- Bake bread or treats to share with your neighborhood fire or police station.
- Collect pop cans and donate the proceeds to your favorite nonprofit.
- Pick up litter in your neighborhood.
The Volunteer Center works with companies of all sizes to engage employees in volunteering at several levels. These programs help build a culture of service within the company and provide critical support to our nonprofit agency partners.
Ways Your Company Can Volunteer:
- Day of Caring – The largest volunteer event in Northwest Indiana taking place annually in September.
- On-Site Collection Drives – Partner with a nonprofit to provide food, diapers, school supplies, pet products and more.
- Skills-Based Volunteering – A chance for individuals or teams to use business and technical skills to make an impact in our community
- Benefits of volunteering as a company:
- Improve employee morale and retention rate
- Build relationships
- Create a reputation for caring about your community
Make an impact!