4 Exciting Community Service Ideas in the USA
What would you say if you discovered that you could travel the world, do some good and have lots of fun all at the same time? You’d probably dismiss the idea as fanciful, right?
Well, it is possible to combine all three by volunteering for community service with charities and community organisations across America. In many cases, the experience is highly rewarding, and you get to meet new friends in the process.
There are four types of community service in particular that attract people from all over the world, and getting involved is probably easier than you think.
Community Service Idea 1: Environmental Projects
Inner city projects are underway in many of the world’s major cities, and you could be helping local action groups and charities to transform some of the more run-down and deprived neighbourhoods in the world.
You could get stuck in to a community garden project, whilst joining a tree-planting initiative will help you to leave a lasting legacy in the world. There are also some fantastic urban produce projects underway which help to feed the local homeless community. Just remember: it’s a lot of hard work!
Two great places to start your search for environmental projects in local communities are the Volunteer website and Do Something – a site for teens and young adults who want to make a difference on their travels.
Community Service Idea 2: Projects for the Homeless
Some of the largest, richest cities in the world have major problems with homelessness, and you can do your bit to make the lives of street-dwellers more bearable.
Making a difference can be something as simple as volunteering at a soup kitchen or distributing blankets and clothing to people on the streets. However, if you’re feeling a little more ambitious, you could help one of the major home-building projects funded by Habitat for Humanity.
The Red Cross also operates projects for the homeless and vulnerable all over the world, and they are always on the look-out for volunteers to help with blood donation projects, education initiatives and reach-out programmes.
Community Service Idea 3: Working with the Elderly
Sometimes, helping the elderly simply means being there for companionship and emotional support. There are many charities for the elderly that concentrate solely on dealing with loneliness, or you could help administer major care initiatives across local communities.
There are several ways you can help to make the life of elderly people more fulfilling:
- Take part in social outreach programmes
- Help with the local Meals on Wheels initiative
- Contact a local charity for the elderly and ask how you can help
- Volunteer to help with household chores such as gardening and cleaning
- Volunteer to take part in a wide range of initiatives funded by Twilight Wish – a US charity aimed at improving the quality of life for the elderly
Community Service Idea 4: Working with Children
There are several charities in the USA aimed at helping underprivileged, abandoned and abused children, and working with them can be very rewarding.
Whether you want to become a big brother or sister to an orphaned child or help with the administration of summer camps, you can make a real difference to young lives whilst having some fun.
A great place to start your search for community service work with children is the Operation Smile website. This national charity in the USA focuses on education, outreach and medical projects for children with facial deformities.
What Are You Waiting For?