You’re stumped! All your friends are heading off to their shiny paid internships (and won’t shut up about it) and even those who haven’t got an internship may have unpaid work experience or may be shadowing somebody. So what on earth are you going to do with your summer vacation? Part-time work is an option but have you ever considered online volunteering?
What is Online Volunteering?
Online volunteering isn’t some trick term that refers to you spending time building schools in developing countries on The Sims and send them off to be considered as actual ideas. Rather, it’s a term that classes a variety of volunteering opportunities that can be undertaken from the comfort of your own home. All you need is a laptop!
This means that if you’re a bit broke over the summer, you can sponge off (read: worship the generosity of) your parents and still get some valuable work experience under your belt that will allow you to land the dream job or internship the following summer.
What Opportunities Are Out There?
Sounds great, right? Yeah we thought so too. But who and what can you do online volunteering for?
Of course, it depends on what industry you want to move into. If you’re a media savvy student, there’s loads of stuff you can get involved with. Online magazines will always be on the outlook for willing contributors, and there are also web-based radio stations you could volunteer for.
Alternatively, if you’re into your programming and web design, there are opportunities to help start-up businesses remotely. You could also help build social media presence for a brand’s Facebook and Twitter pages. If you have an eye-for-detail and see yourself getting into publishing, you could proofread pages of books being converted to digital formats. All from the comfort of your own home!
There’s even some mighty obscure online volunteering opportunities, such as translating old weather records and you can even get out of your house and help put old trees on the map!
You might want to undertake some volunteering where you can make a difference to people’s lives, but you can’t afford to jet off to the developing world and build schools or shelters.
Ladies and gentlemen, it’s our pleasure to introduce microvolunteering! Microvolunteering can be something as small as helping an elderly person do their weekly shop. This has also moved into the online sphere so there are a handful of opportunities available.
For example you can donate your hair (!) to children suffering from long term medical loss. All you need is a pair of clippers and a plug socket. You could also write a letter or short story to a ill child in order to put a smile on their face. You could even put your knitting skills to use (thanks Gran!) and produce items of clothing for people in need.
Online volunteering is still a fledgling form of volunteering but there are certainly opportunities out there. You can make a difference and enhance your CV, all whilst wearing your pyjamas!