Even during the holidays, there are people out there in New York City who don’t have enough money for food, a teenager who is lost and confused, troops in Iraq who can’t be around their families, and schools suffering from a tight budget. There is so much we all can do to help these kinds of people. I know that time is limited during the holidays, but sometimes life can be limited for the less-fortunate. If you are in the New York City area and are looking for some great volunteer opportunities for the holidays, here are five that might send you in the right direction.
Holiday Volunteer Opportunity #1: NYC Service:
This service is very well known for its volunteer service in the New York City area. They don’t just focus on one kind of volunteering, they do pretty much everything you can possibly think of. If you aren’t sure what you want to do, but you know you want to volunteer, then this is the place to look. You can help with food drives, help send care packages to the troops in Iraq, mentor a teenager during this holiday, you can help fight the flu and other health problems, give blood, and so much more. You can even create your own volunteer opportunity. Whatever it is you want to do, you can do it with this service.
For more information about this service, visit www.nycservice.org. You can find complete information there.
Holiday Volunteer Opportunity #2: New York City Department of Parks and Recreation:
This is more for the people who want to volunteer to help their community and the environment. Someone has to keep the parks clean and create the recreational programs for the parks. If you are looking for something like this, then you should definitely look into the information on their website. You can plant trees and other plants in the parks, clean up the area and remove all the garbage that pollutes the ground, you can even recycle clothing and textiles! They have a whole Volunteer Events Calendar on their website, so make sure to check that out.
For more information on this service, visit www.nycgovparks.org.
Holiday Volunteer Opportunity #3: United Way of New York City:
This service is actually in conjunction with the NYC Service and the mayor. However, this service concentrates on low-income families, problems with the city’s educational institutions, and with the city’s health. If you want to help families learn how to become financially stable and how to spend their money correctly, or donate time or money to educational opportunities with the city’s youth, or put together first-aid kits and emergency food packages for food pantries, then this is the place to look into. They are a really great service with thousands and thousands of dedicated, motivated, and passionate people who help people simply out of the goodness of their heart.
For more information on this service, visit www.unitedwaynyc.org.
Holiday Volunteer Opportunity #4: Volunteer Referral Center:
If you don’t know where to go to volunteer, then this is the place to call. What you can do is you can set up an appointment with a counselor and they listen to what you feel will benefit you and what you want to do for your city. Based on these special interests, they will match you with a few different volunteer opportunities and you can pick which one you might like to do. They will then get in contact with that agency and set everything up for you. The Volunteer Referral Center is partners with many different non-profit agencies and organizations so there are so many things that you can choose from. There is something for everyone. So, this is a great place to go for those of you who aren’t sure what’s out there.
For more information on this service, visit www.volunteer-referral.com.
Holiday Volunteer Opportunity #5: New York City Coalition Against Hunger:
This service is specifically for those who want to fight hunger in New York City. On the website, they have tons of volunteer opportunities such as counseling the hungry, food pantries, soup kitchens, and so much more. They have certain opportunities indicated as “urgent”. Those are the ones that have the most need and need to have the most volunteers. If you really want to help out the hunger, you should look into the more urgent ones so that certain hunger emergencies will be better taken care of. If you are a professional in specific services, this organization is always looking for more professionals to assist the hungry.
For more information on this service, visit www.nyccah.org/volunteer.
Volunteering is always a great thing to do during the holidays because there are always people that really need help. And there is always something that you can do. No one expects you to spend all your time volunteering, but an hour here and there will still be helpful. Every little bit helps!