Virtual Volunteering: Online Activities That Help Make a Difference
The world has not been the same since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. The rapid spread of this epidemic has affected every single life, and while newspapers and local channels flood our brains with one story after the other every day, we have also seen countless heroes rise against all odds to help those in need during challenging times like these.
Human life is still at risk as lockdowns ease around the world, and individuals, NGOs and other groups of people continue to go out of their way to save others. Did you know that you too can change someone’s life without leaving your house? Yes, you read that right. While there are people on-ground taking their precautions and helping others, you can make your contribution by volunteering virtually and using your skillset to support a cause.
Examples of Virtual Volunteering Activities Across the World
Thanks to the tremendous growth in technology and digitization, people all around the globe can easily connect with one another, simply at the click of a button. So, why not leverage the digital world to help people in need? If you truly wish to bring about change, the first step is to identify a cause that you wholeheartedly support and then put together a list of people, NGOs and organizations that run campaigns supporting that cause. It could be anything from eradicating hunger, educating children, treating cancer patients, feeding stray animals to planting trees, cleaning water bodies, or raising funds for those who lost their jobs - irrespective of who they are and where they are based, if they work towards a noble cause to bring about change, then there are a couple of areas where you can pitch in. Here’s how:
1. Content/Graphic/Accounts for NGOs
An effective way for you to volunteer virtually is by offering your skills to benefit organizations/people who help make a difference. Nonprofit organizations run majorly on outsourced resources. By creating visual graphic content, copy for their website, email, or social media, or offering to work through their financial reports, you are not only helping them spread awareness, but through the presentation of their work, you are helping them create consistency and goodwill in society. You will come across countless NGOs that selflessly work towards the betterment of individuals in their care and could use extra hands in areas where they lack expertise or funds. Offering to help even once a week can make all the difference.
2. Raise Awareness Online
That’s the thing about social media – it helps spread news like wildfire. Billions of people online consume content hourly, but unfortunately, nonprofits don’t always fit with digital trends. One needs the right expertise to get their story across, or even go ‘viral’ on social media. But if you’re someone with a well-established audience then you can use your platform and tools to help spread awareness around NGOs and their campaigns. From sharing timely updates and local stories to creating beautiful impact videos, social media and other tools can help NGOs raise awareness online, and you can play a major role in building their audience as well. It is important to utilize this gift of digital media to create a positive space on the internet for everyone out there.
3. Raise Funds Online
Those who work for the betterment of society, animals, the environment and even our natural resources combine expertise, skills, and adequate funds to do so. Even those with the purest of pure intentions may not progress in social work without money and resources. While donating to charities is an excellent way to offer help, you can further extend the amount you donate by helping raise funds for local nonprofits. Additional funds will in turn help them expand the scope of their outreach. Alternatively, you can also reach out to NGOs to get details on their ongoing campaigns and offer to raise funds for one or two that you would like to support. This is also a great way to encourage your friends and family to donate to charities.
4. Teach/Coach Online
Unfortunately, countless students have been forced to drop out of school due to financial instability and fear of being exposed to the virus. Quality education, which in the perfect world is a basic human right, is now a luxury that has slipped out of the hands of those who lost their jobs during this pandemic. This is where you come into the picture as a guide, mentor, coach, or teacher. With your knowledge and expertise, you can e-volunteer by conducting online classes for students. No matter what your field, you can help educate students across all age groups, or simply set up motivational lectures to give hope to those who need it the most. Students are the future of every nation, and education on hold can put their careers at risk. Volunteering to educate students online is a great place to start, and only a couple hours every week can bring about change.
5. Promote & Support Local Artisans
Since the pandemic struck, people across the world have discovered their hidden talents. While some revisited old hobbies, looking for creative ways to monetize them, others picked up a new skill. There are countless charities that support the work of local artists who use traditional methods to create products that are sustainable and plastic-free. If you come across a charity that promotes local artisans, the most effective way for you to contribute is by purchasing from them online. Be it edible items, jewelry, household necessities, or even textile, a little money and a whole lot of support can truly help influence the lives of these people.
Simple Ways to Volunteer Online
Some other simple, yet effective virtual volunteer opportunities include:
- Counselling online
- Conducting group meetings for people going through similar stages of life (losing a job, a family member, or a pet)
- Organizing webinars to share your knowledge with those seeking jobs
- Promoting fundraisers
- Connecting nonprofits with sources of funding they could benefit from
- Conducting virtual art and craft contests for children
Once you start looking for ways to contribute, you will come across amazing e-volunteer opportunities that are engaging, enjoyable and serve the purpose. All it takes is a couple hours every week. Volunteering online is rewarding, and there is so much that you can learn by simply offering to help others. So why wait? Start reaching out to nonprofits asking if you can help in anyway. Simple, kind gestures like these are the ones that truly make a difference in the long run. Happy virtual volunteering!