Volunteering can open up great opportunities to develop your skills and help you understand what will be expected of you in a work place environment. The benefits of undertaking voluntary work is that it fits around your schedule and allows you to develop key skills that look great on your CV. Not only does volunteering allow you to gain an understanding of what employers expect from you, but you can now do more of this from the comfort of your own home!
Most voluntary organisations do not expect you to have much or direct work experience, however, they expect candidates to have soft/basic skills such as communication, organisation and team working.
Here are our top remote volunteering suggestions to get you started:
1. Do you speak more than one language?
If you speak more than one language and are able to translate written or spoken language other than English, then you might just be what UN Volunteers and Translators without borders are looking for. There are opportunities for translators, eager to commit some serious time to volunteering. From speaking and listening to transcribing, you can develop some great skills here and show off your versatility in environments that may work between different countries.
2. Hotline Support
Volunteering with hotlines such mental health, well- being or healthcare support are available virtually. Age UK and The Silver Line have telephone befriending opportunities to get involved with; offering students a great way to support members of the community, whilst brushing up on those important communications and listening skills. Volunteering on hotlines requires patience and understanding, so if this sounds like you, it is a great opportunity to help out as well as gain evidence of this skillset for your CV.
3. Calling all Bookworms
The Bookmark Reading Charity offers a 6-week flexible volunteer programme to support 5-8 year olds in learning to read. You can dedicate some of your time during the week to hold reading sessions virtually, giving young children the chance to develop key skills and confidence to read. Employers love to see community spirit in their future employees!
4. Bring sight to blind and low-vision people
Be my eyes is a free app that connects blind and low-vision people with sighted volunteers, all through video call. Offering your time means that you can connect with others to help them to distinguish colour, read instructions, check expiry dates and even navigate their surroundings. This requires strong attention to detail and relies on the volunteers to be able to communicate effectively.
5. Put those academic skills into practice
Calling all students, it is finally time to start putting that academic knowledge into practice. Whether you are a marketing, finance, IT or even design student, there are many virtual volunteering opportunities and projects to get involved in. Participate in cutting edge research at Zooniverse; with projects across the sciences, humanities and many other fields, or share your IT knowledge and tech tips with thousands of change makers at TechSoup. There is even the chance to get involved with wider projects and initiatives, putting those business skills into practice at Catchafire or support an entrepreneur to build their business skills at Grow Movement.org.
With the 20th Student Volunteering Week taking place between the 8th and 14th February, we encourage you to explore and sign up to volunteer. The Student Volunteering Network website offers guidance on how you can get involved during this week. But remember volunteering can take place all year round so explore virtual volunteering opportunities at Do-It.org.
If you fancy discussing any voluntary opportunities, get in touch with us by emailing YourCareers@qa.com.