How to start volunteering and how much time does it take?
Are you looking to become a volunteer and wondering where to begin? Are you thinking about how much time you should put aside to assist? Don’t worry – we are here to help and answer your burning questions!
There could be many reasons you want to try out volunteering. Perhaps you are looking to make a difference, build your CV, help a cause you are passionate about or put your skills and hobbies into practice! But where do you start?
There are many ways to consider how to start volunteering. Here are some ideas to begin with.
Think about your interests
What could I volunteer for, you ask? Begin by thinking where your passions lie and what activities motivate you every day. Asking yourself these questions will be a good indicator for how you could become a volunteer.
Maybe you love history and reading, so why not explore libraries or heritage sites near you and contact these organisations to ask about volunteering opportunities.
What causes are you passionate about?
When fundraising or volunteering for a charity, do you have one particular cause in mind or a variety? Are there charity awareness days you enjoy taking part in each year?
There are many amazing charities out there and a lot of them would love to have your efforts put to good use as a volunteer. These not-for-profit organisations may have an exciting project or event coming up and need extra helping hands, so visit their websites and enquire about volunteering with the charity.
Weigh up your career prospects
You may be starting out in your career or looking to build on essential industry skills, so keep an eye out for the vacancies you think will benefit you.
Volunteering goes beyond helping at events and in charity shops – you can also volunteer in HR, Finance, Marketing and many other sectors.
What skills do you want to build on?
Have you always wanted to become a leader but not had the chance to see if this works for you? Now is your chance by volunteering your time to see if this is suitable.
Try challenging yourself with activities you would not usually consider, such as by taking part in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (DofE).
These are just some ideas for how you can volunteer. Volunteering offers endless chances for you to find your true self and life purpose, but it also gives you the chance to socialise and build new relationships – your mental health benefits as well.
Online Resources for Volunteering
Apart from directly going to these charities and organisations to enquire about opportunities, there are also online resources you can turn to. Here are some places to explore:
- Do-it.life – Do-it.life (formerly Do-it.org) is a popular platform for finding an array of opportunities to commit as a volunteer. You can filter results by your interests, skills, locations, causes and more.
- CharityJob – Despite the name of the website, CharityJob does contain a ‘Volunteering’ section with a whole host of vacancies for you.
- Council websites – Your local council or local authority may have a section visible on their website looking for volunteers to help in the community.
Hours as a volunteer
Once you have made up your mind you may begin to think, but how much time should I be dedicating?
Most organisations would like volunteers to commit to a couple of hours a week across a longer timescale to maximise your contributions. However, this ultimately depends on the organisation.There is also the option to commit your time to one-off events, such as helping out at festivals like Glastonbury or sporting events like the London Marathon.
Become a volunteer with 1HOUR
Are you still thinking how do I start volunteering?
Here at 1HOUR we have recently launched our new volunteering app, which allows you to browse available one-hour online teaching opportunities and sign up for sessions and subjects of your choice. Maybe you are a coding expert, a native speaker in one or more languages, or a creative artist wanting to share your abilities. We have a range of opportunities available for you to help out – and you only need to dedicate 1 hour!
So what are you waiting for? Join us and become a volunteer today.