Post-college volunteer opportunities?
January 4, 2012 11:44 AM   Subscribe

Post-college volunteer programs besides Americorps?

One of my relatives is trying to find a six-month post-collegiate volunteer program that includes housing - basically, something along the line of Peace Corps or Americorps.

They'd prefer something in a structured environment where they'll be around others in their twenties and have either housing provided or assistance obtaining housing. Preferably, it will also include some mentoring component as well.

I've had limited success finding programs of interest on Ye Olde Google and their university counselors/offices haven't been of much help. Any suggestions, Hive Mind?
posted by huskerdont to Society & Culture (11 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

n.b.: It is a year-long commitment (August-August) and you have to commit to "simple living." You are not required to be Catholic, but there's a heavy spiritual development compoment.
posted by Snarl Furillo at 12:05 PM on January 4, 2012

If you like Philadelphia, Philly Fellows is a great option. It involves a placement in a non-profit organization, living together with other Fellows, and some small compensation through an arrangement with Americorps. It runs for a full year, though, so longer than they want.
posted by brackish.line at 12:31 PM on January 4, 2012

Your big problem here might be trying to find one of these that only goes for six months. Americorps does eleven month stints, and a single Peace Corps term is for twenty-seven months (three months training, twenty-four in the field). This makes a certain amount of sense. Turnover is tough on organizations, so even those groups that plan on it like to minimize it. Having to retrain your entire workforce every six months is a real drag.

You may find that WWOOF has some opportunities that fit the bill though. They're less a program organizer and more a means of connecting volunteers with individual farms, who set up their own programs at will. Terms can last anywhere from months to years, but they aren't paid (you just get room and board), so shorter terms are pretty common.
posted by valkyryn at 12:36 PM on January 4, 2012

Project Vote Smart has internships.

I think they generally run 10 weeks, but I expect that longer ones could happen. Room and board is provided, but I think there is no pay. The internships are geared for new college graduates, but other positions have a mix of people.

Another option is WWOOF -- organic farming.
posted by maurreen at 1:11 PM on January 4, 2012

I have friends (of varying degrees of religiousness) who did Lutheran Volunteer Corps and seemed happy with it. The term is one full year though.
posted by ActionPopulated at 1:19 PM on January 4, 2012

City Year is affiliated with AmeriCorps, but could be an option. Although City Year is a ten month commitment.
posted by statsgirl at 1:44 PM on January 4, 2012

I've heard great things about LVC and JVC, both of which are a year.

It seems like practically everyone I knew did a service-y type thing after college and all of them were intended to last ten months to a year, so your relative may be SOL if they want to only do half a year.
posted by dismas at 2:14 PM on January 4, 2012

Alliance for Catholic Education, which provides teachers to Catholic schools in low-income areas -- also a 2-year commitment, but you come out with a masters' degree and two years of teaching experience. Communal living with the other participants is the norm, in housing provided by the program.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 2:19 PM on January 4, 2012

Idealist would be a good place to look for options.
posted by mareli at 2:38 PM on January 4, 2012

City Year
posted by zombieApoc at 5:18 PM on January 4, 2012

Student Conservation Association. Environmental oriented internships, w/housing, small stipend. Mostly college kids, and post-college grads. Memail me if you want some info, I participated in a few internships through this organization.
posted by shinyshiny at 8:04 PM on January 4, 2012

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