Thinking about volunteering?
As someone who works regularly with volunteers we know one of the barriers to volunteerism is how to get started.
Before you dive into a volunteer opportunity, there are three key questions you’ll want to ask to make sure you find a good match for both you and the organization.
First and foremost, you should have an interest and passion for the mission of any organization you volunteer with. You are making an investment of your time and skills and as such you should think about the topics you are interested in and where you will feel good about making a contribution.
What inspires you? Local community? Health? Education? The arts?
Also, as a volunteer, you become a representative of that organization, so you want to make sure you share the same values and goals and feel comfortable with their mission.
Think about what skills you can offer and how much time you have to give.
Most organizations that offer volunteer opportunities hope to attract volunteers with skill sets they can’t afford to hire. Charities will always need people to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty. Today, charities are also looking for professional skills.
Do you have policy expertise? Public relations experience? Facilitation skills? Think about what skills you can expertly offer and what skills are you working on.
Time is another part of this equation. Volunteer positions come in all shapes and sizes. Knowing how much time you can dedicate to volunteering will help an organization find an opportunity that is manageable for you.
While this shouldn’t be your first motivation, it’s important to think about what you are looking for out of the experience. Volunteering doesn’t have to be 100 percent altruistic.
Are you looking to improve your leadership skills? Meet new people? Get to know your community better? Many employers and schools look favourably on volunteer experience so adding it to your application or resume can give you the winning edge.
Regardless of the answers to your questions, there’s an opportunity that is right for you. The best opportunity will be one that matches all of your answers to these questions.
Here at the, Racehorse Rescue Centre we are fortunate to work with dedicated volunteers from every walk of life, offering us an incredibly diverse group of skills and talents that support us in achieving our goals and fulfilling our promise to our community.