Charities run on peoples’ goodwill and time. They are funded by peoples’ generosity and receive no government funding. They are staffed by a few managers and other key staff who are paid but a major part of their workforce is made up of volunteers.
Volunteering for a charity is worthwhile and very rewarding, but it is important to find a role that really suits you and makes the most of the time you have to offer. You may have important skills or certain personality traits that would make you perfect for a particular role.
There is a huge range of volunteering positions within charities. You could do anything from working in a charity shop to helping out at fundraising events to walking dogs for a dog shelter or fostering animals until they are adopted.
Charities are all organisations and although they do not seek to make a profit they do have to be run like a business, with people helping with budgets, marketing, fundraising and IT. If you have office-based skills, these can easily be translated into volunteer work for charities.
Many people volunteer as a way to get back into the working world after a career break or long period of ill-health. Volunteering builds confidence and gets you back into the routine of work. It is important that you are clear about what times and hours you are able to offer and how long you will be available for so that the charity can find a suitable role for you.
Volunteering can also look very good on your C.V. if you are searching for employment, as it shows a willingness to work, compassion and trustworthiness. Some volunteers go on to get paid positions within the charities that they have worked for, by showing their dedication, commitment and a ‘can-do’ attitude, but others are more than happy to just give their time knowing that they are helping a worthwhile cause.
If you are more interested in volunteering in a ‘hands-on’ way, the best sort of charities to work for are animal charities, which need a lot of help to care for the animals they look after. If you have always wanted pets but cannot afford one or cannot commit the time needed to care for one, then volunteering for an animal charity such as the RSPCA will be a great way for you to get to spend time with the animals you love.
If you are interested in volunteering, contact charities of your choice and ask if they have any positions available. Talk to them about what you would like and what you can offer and see where it leads you!
This is a guest post by Claire Chat a new Londoner, travel passionate and animal lover. She blogs about Pets and Travelling in Europe. If you want Claire to write you specific content, you can find email her here or contact her on Twitter (Claire_Chat).