Lifestyle

5/13/2021 | By Kari Smith

It can feel isolating and lonely to spend a lot of time at home, but for some, staying in is a necessity. Some folks suffer from mobility issues or a compromised immune system, while others simply don’t have the means to get out very often. If you’re among the many looking to remain active and give back to the community regardless of having to remain at home for a majority of the time, there are still plenty of ways to volunteer from home!

1. Write a letter

Find a non-profit organization that facilitates the process of writing an encouraging card or letter and sending it to someone in need – a service member, a senior citizen in a nursing home, etc.

When writing a letter to a service member through an organization like Support Our Troops®, be sure to be positive, encouraging, and kind. Do not share personal information, and do not seal your letter, as the organization may inspect your letter before sending it.

Letters to a senior citizen through non-profit such as Love for Our Elders should be written by hand and legibly for that personal touch. Be creative, colorful, and fun – make it a letter you would look forward to receiving yourself!

2. Volunteer from home for the Red Cross

This well-known, nonprofit, charitable institution has a range of opportunities available, including virtual “Volunteer from Home” positions. If you spend a lot of time on social media, you can be a digital advocate for the Red Cross.

Volunteers in this capacity simply share organizational content on their personal social media pages to help raise awareness. Throughout the Red Cross website, you will see social media icons such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, YouTube, and the Red Cross blog that you can click on to share. You can also create an online fundraiser to help raise funds for the charity.

3. Do you enjoy knitting?

Join an organization such as Project Linus, which provides new, handmade blankets to children in need. In addition to knitting blankets, you can also donate materials that you may no longer be able to use. If you have sewing skills, consider becoming a volunteer seamstress for an organization such as NICU Helping Hands, which makes angel gowns for babies that pass prematurely out of donated formal and wedding gowns.

4. If your skills are a bit more technical, consider becoming a UN volunteer

The United Nations offers a variety of online opportunities that allow individuals to volunteer from home. There are many ways to help – art and design, writing and editing, project development and management, teaching and training, translation, and more.

Check out their website for a comprehensive list of available positions. Add filters to sort by the amount of time required, and choose from projects that require anywhere from one to 20+ hours weekly. You can also select a goal to support, such as gender equality, quality education, climate action, and many more.

5. Simply calling and checking on a neighbor or friend is a great way to perhaps ease loneliness for both of you.

Make a list of elderly, shut-in, or ill friends or family members, and set aside time each week to reach out and check in. Choose a time that is best for them, keep the conversation positive and upbeat, and be mindful of any time constraints they may have.

To find more of the best volunteer opportunity for you, check out websites such as VolunteerMatch.org, which match your cause area, skills, and location with a volunteer opportunity that would best fit you. Be sure to choose “Virtual Only” under “Opportunity Type” for work-from-home jobs. Skills such as grant writing, research, and web development are in high demand. Looking for something less technical? There are also positions such as the Soldier’s Angels Baby Brigade – which supports virtual baby showers for deployed, ill or injured service members whose families are expecting a baby.

There are many ways to occupy your time, but to volunteer from home is an incredibly fulfilling way to help pass the hours while also helping someone else in need and making a difference.

Kari Smith

Kari Smith is a frequent contributor to Seniors Guide, helping to keep those in the senior industry informed and up-to-date. She's a Virginia native whose love of writing began as a songwriter recording her own music. In addition to teaching music and performing in the Richmond area, Kari also enjoys riding horses and farming.

Kari Smith