It’s incredibly easy to find all kinds of interesting volunteer opportunities in New York City- if you know where to look. Luckily, there are some great organizations bringing together individuals and small outreach efforts of all stripes into a larger network, enabling individuals looking for ways to help their pet causes, or assist local outreach efforts, to find the best way to donate their time. Check out our list of organizations and projects that help you get involved personally- and find a charity that appeals to you.
New York Cares is a fabulous way to become involved in all kinds of different causes through volunteering. By creating an online account and attending a short, forty-five minute orientation, you will be granted access to an extensive database full of different opportunities from which you can choose. Their projects include senior citizen outreach, animal rescue and care, youth outreach through athletics, tutoring, helping homeless children, preparing meals for the hungry, educating low-income adults on finances and job skills, as well as cleaning up and revitalizing city parks and neighborhoods. You are also able to choose your level of commitment according to your availability; flexible, non-commitment based volunteering, short-term project volunteering, and long-term project volunteering are all available as options.
New York Cares will also be holding their annual soiree on March 1st, at Crimson (915 Broadway), from 6:00pm- 10:00pm, in celebration of 25 years of volunteering and public service. The event will feature an open bar, food, silent auction, and “mystery raffle." Guests should dress in cocktail attire.
DonorsChoose.org gives individuals access to classrooms around the country in need of all kinds of different assistance. The website lets you choose where you want your money to go- down to the exact classroom and the specific type of assistance you’ll be providing. From providing IPADs and tablets to children with Autism so that they can learn new skills through visual learning tools, to building a small library for a class without access to the proper resources, this process can be both highly rewarding and incredibly personalized. So if you want to schools in your community become better equipped to help students thrive, you can search for local classrooms who have requested help.
Charity water helps provide access to clean, safe drinking water for people in impoverished regions around the world. Through Charity:Water’s website, you can start up your own fundraising initiative, or, if you live in New York City, sign up to become a monthly volunteer and attend the Monthly Volunteer Night. You can also sign up to sponsor a specific water project in the developing world. It’s a great way to get involved in your good works, instead of just writing a check and never thinking of it again.
Food Bank for New York City feeds millions of hungry New Yorkers every year, and they are in constant need of volunteers to help sort, package, and inspect foods at their warehouse, in addition to individuals who can staff the numerous food pantries and soup kitchens within the Food Bank for New York City’s network. The Food Bank also needs a large task force of volunteers to spread public awareness through city-wide information distribution, as well as numerous interviewers and research conductors to help with their education and outreach efforts.