As a superhero, you’re always looking for ways to give back to your community. There are more than enough organizations and causes for the superhero to choose from. Too many, in fact.  With so many to choose from, how do you decide which opportunity is best for you? Here are a few tips to help you decide:

  1. Choose the cause you’re most passionate about. Every cause is a worthwhile cause. You may feel the pull to choose one or more because you recognize the need for change. However, in order to be a truly valuable volunteer, you need to be able to serve as a “raving fan” for your cause day in and day out. So remember, it’s okay to choose your passion even when volunteering.
  2. Be realistic about how much time you can commit. Don’t be afraid to ask how much time the organization expects each volunteer to commit. In order for it to be fair to the organization and manageable for you, stick to opportunities that fit into your current schedule. Whatever you do, don’t over-commit. Volunteering should be an uplifting experience, not a stressful one.
  3. Talk to other volunteers. Find out what other volunteers think about their experience. Ask them what kind of activities they do? What are the other volunteers and administrators like? What do they like most/least about volunteering? It’s one of the best ways to find out what your experience will be like.
  4. Compare the volunteer duties with your skill set. Look for opportunities that will also let you shine. If you’re an artist, look for ways where you can help beautify dilapidated buildings. If you’re a carpenter, then maybe something like Habitat for Humanity will work well for you. If you’re a writer, see if you can help with their newsletters or grant writing. Of course, don’t overlook the fact that volunteer opportunities are a great way to learn new skills, so don’t be afraid to challenge yourself either.
  5. Try it out. Talk to the volunteer coordinator and see if its possible for you to try help with an event or some activities before you commit to volunteering on a regular basis.

If you’re not sure where to look for volunteer opportunities, check out Volunteer Match or United We Serve for opportunities in your area.

Above all, don’t be afraid to explore multiple opportunities. Look at the many ways you can participate within each organization and choose the one that best fits your interests, personality, and time availability. Above all, actually get out there and do it. It doesn’t take much time to make a huge difference in someone’s life.