Where should I volunteer?
November 11, 2009 10:47 AM   Subscribe

Breaking out of my funk filter: I'd like to do some volunteer work on a regular but limited basis (say, a couple hours a week). I feel that writing is one of my skills, and in the past I've helped friends write really great resumes and cover letters, so I think this might be a good thing for me to focus on. I suppose helping with writing college essays might also work. I have an idea that I'd like to work with veterans specifically, although I'm open to different ideas. And I live in the SF Bay Area. So can you suggest organizations that I might work with - either in my ideal scenario of helping vets with resumes - or doing something else that would utilize my skills?
posted by serazin to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (8 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Go to volunteermatch.org . I also live in the SF Bay Area, and have been volunteering with Jumpstart and Reading Partners and MOCHA (the children's museum). But 826 Valencia has after-school tutoring, and while I don't know if there's career development specific volunteering, there's a ton of adult literacy volunteering. Also check out Idealist.org, Hands On, One Brick, etc. You have to search all sites, because sadly it's not all on one database!
posted by dhn at 10:57 AM on November 11, 2009

NPR did a story recently about the challenges veterans face when they return from combat and use their GI benefits to start or go back to college. They are often alienated by the sensibility of more conventional college students, and struggle to adapt to new kinds of challenges. If there's a veterans affairs office at any of your local universities, they might appreciate your help.
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 10:58 AM on November 11, 2009

Response by poster: foxy_hedgehog, that NPR story was part of what sparked me. I will look at the veterans affairs office.
posted by serazin at 11:03 AM on November 11, 2009

This article in the Chron today, talks about the Swords to Plowshares program at Treasure Island, which helps to rehouse homeless veterans. Job training seems to be a part of their mission as well. Give them a call?
posted by otherwordlyglow at 11:13 AM on November 11, 2009

Looks like they do help with resumes but I wonder if they would only want staff/case managers doing that. Still, worth asking.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 11:16 AM on November 11, 2009

Another avenue you could explore, probably with your local VA, is helping veterans translate their military skills to civilian skills for their resumes. It would take a lot of research and understanding on your behalf, but that is what makes it something veterans could really use.
posted by semp at 11:18 AM on November 11, 2009

If you have a Goodwill industries in your area, my experience is that they are always looking for volunteers to help with job training (including resumes and writing samples). In my area they work with veterans as well as other groups (the disabled, elderly, homeless, etc.).
posted by dpx.mfx at 12:38 PM on November 11, 2009

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