Volunteering is a great way to put your time and talents to good use—and you don’t even have to leave home to make a difference. With a little effort and willpower, you can donate to a cause that’s important to you and help those who need it most. Here are nine ways to volunteer from home and help create a better tomorrow for those in need.
Food Volunteering Ideas
While many are stocking up on groceries, food pantries across the country are running low on key supplies. Donate a few canned goods and other necessities to a food bank in your area. Some may even pick up donations from your home. Consider hosting a neighborhood event and encourage your neighbors to source their kitchens for an even bigger contribution. Some of the most-needed food items for donation are:
- Peanut butter
- Canned fruits
- Shelf-stable milk
- Canned chicken
- Canned tuna
- Canned vegetables
- Trail mix
- Canned beans
Sewing Volunteering Ideas
Blankets and quilts are some of the most-used items for charities. If you enjoy sewing, taking on a project for a charity of your choice can be a rewarding way to help comfort men, women, and children in need. Some types of blankets and quilts you may consider sewing for charity include:
- Lap blankets
- Full-size blankets
- Flannel blankets
Some organizations that accept quilt and blanket donations include:
Mentoring Volunteering Ideas
Big Brothers Big Sisters is a one-on-one mentorship program that connects children and teens facing adversity with a responsible, caring adult. Just because you aren’t able to meet in person, it doesn’t mean these connections have to get put on hold. With an e-mentoring platform currently in the works, Big Brothers Big Sisters is fostering relationship-building through technology.
Writing Volunteering Ideas
Whether it’s grant writing, social media writing, proofreading, copywriting, marketing, or another writing need, several nonprofit organizations seek volunteer professional writers. Volunteer online and check out volunteermatch.org for current opportunities and organizations that are meaningful to you.
Translating Volunteering Ideas
The United Nations Volunteer program contributes to peace and development through volunteerism worldwide. With a global reach, its website, onlinevolunteering.org, includes several opportunities for translating English to Arabic, English to French, Spanish to English, and much more. Organizations include UNICEF, WISE, UNESCO, and others.
Designing Volunteering Ideas
Check out Wings of Destiny, a nonprofit film company that creates humanitarian and altruistic films to raise awareness. Looking for graphic design support for ongoing projects, they work with organizations like St. Jude’s Children’s Research Center, Hadassah Medical Center, WHO, and more.
Comforting Volunteering Ideas
Everyone could use a little comfort right now, but those in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and our deployed service members are the ones who might need it most. Adopt a service member through Soldiers’ Angels, and send care packages, goods, and letters to let them know they’re loved. Also, consider reaching out to a local nursing care facility to donate cards, posters, or an uplifting word of encouragement.
Tutoring Volunteering Ideas
Upchieve.org connects low-income high school students in the United States with live, online tutors—you. With students in need of math support and basic college advice, tutors help kids succeed now and in the future. Upchieve also provides resources on how to become an Academic Coach. You can choose from a variety of subjects too, like:
- Reading and writing
- Social studies
- College counseling
- Standardized testing
Fundraising Volunteering Ideas
There’s always an opportunity to take the initiative and raise funds for an organization that touches your heart. As the country grapples with food insecurity and homelessness, Feeding America and the American Red Cross have been especially impactful during this time. They both have fundraising ideas that you can implement from home.
More Volunteering Ideas: Tips for Reducing Food Waste
From donating canned goods to tutoring students in need, there are ample ways to volunteer from home.
Looking for volunteer ideas for the environment? Consider cutting down on food waste. With so many people experiencing hunger, it’s startling to know that food waste is one of the biggest portions of daily waste in the United States. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), food waste, including food that’s perfectly good but thrown out because of a lack of demand, accounts for 30-40 percent of the food supply—that’s a significant percentage of food being tossed out. Another easy way to volunteer from home is by simply reducing food waste. Read “The Food Re-Cycle: Tips for Reducing Food Waste in Your Kitchen” to learn how.