This article was published on February 5th, 2020
Pack up your heels. Put on your bro boots. Roll up your sleeves. And get to werk, honey. This world is in a heap of messes and the only ones that can save it is you! Countless programs in your area rely strictly on the kindness of strangers and those looking to earn their wings in heaven. Volunteering saves lives, helps lift up communities, and makes you a better, more compassionate person in the end. Be a gay for some good in this world and volunteer today!
Volunteering for your first time might seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Many organizations need foot soldiers and those willing to get down and dirty doing the grunt work, sure. But not all volunteering involves strong backs and weak minds. When you sign up to volunteer, use your skillsets. Finding the right volunteer position or opportunity for you is about leveraging your skills set for benefit to give back to the community. For example, if you’re a writer, every organization needs help with social media. If you’re accountant or financial expert, every group needs numbers crunched. Whether it’s leading the pack or picking up after a charity dinner—no job in volunteering is too big or too small. They’re all essential to helping a non-profit stay afloat.
A great place to start would be contacting your local LGBT community organizations. Many big cities have physical LGBT centers with programs that need volunteers. LGBT senior living centers are great because you get to give back directly to the generation that helped obtain rights for all queer people. You’ll a stronger connection to the gay community and to your own self-identity as someone who isn’t heterosexual. There are other LGBT community organizations involve health, political, youth services, etc. All of these are very grassroots driven and again, depend on the generosity of others for survival.
Your volunteering doesn’t have to be at a queer organization, either. The threat of global warming is very real, and numerous people and ecosystems are under attack as a direct result of climate change. There are ocean clean up groups, save the rainforest causes, save the animal causes, and tree planting programs. But you can start in your own back yard or city, too. Student tutoring, neighborhood clean-up, crime watch, feeding the local homeless, and more are all ways you can directly benefit your own community with the volunteer help you bring.
In 2020, keep a resolution to yourself of being a better person and giving back. Volunteering is a commitment of hours of your time given to someone else or an organization of your choosing. You’ll feel grateful for the opportunity to do something selfless and will inspire others to do the same. You really can change the world, one person, and one volunteer experience at a time.
What motivates you to volunteer and what has been your best volunteer experience? Leave your comments and feedback below.