‘Tis the Season to Serve: Simple Online Ways Our Families Can Serve
This is the best time of year to teach your kids to use technology to help and serve others!
By Katelyn King
‘Tis the season, and many of us are looking for opportunities for our families to give back and help others. Not only does it feel great to serve and show love for others, but it can help our kids see the world from a new perspective, appreciate their blessings, and gain empathy for others.
Sometimes it may seem hard to know where to go to find opportunities to serve and donate. Maybe you even have a great idea, but you do not know how to get people involved. Social media can be a great source in finding and sharing opportunities to help others. In particular Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are great sources from which to get and share information..
Following service organizations on social media can help you find good opportunities for both local and national service projects. By using social media, you can help spread the word and get others involved as well.
Here are 4 organizations to like and follow that can help you find ways to serve the community and be aware of opportunities.
Each month, the site hosts 150,000 local volunteer listings in major cities. Volunteer opportunities from several different sites are pulled into All for Good by feeds to provide an amazing database of volunteer opportunities around the world. All for Good helps connect you to the projects and organizations you are interested in and helps you find the right serve opportunities for you. You do not need to create an account to find ways to volunteer. You can simply click the “Find Ways to Volunteer” tab at the top of the page, and then type in your city and state or zip code to see what is going on around you. The benefit to creating an account is you can start projects and look for volunteers in your area. If you know of an opportunity in your community that is not there, listing it can really help increase your volunteer numbers.
Volunteer match makes it easier for people and good causes to connect. You can see what they are posting on their pages and can go to their website to enter in your zipcode and see what is going on in local communities around you. You can even narrow down your search to issues you are interested in, such as advocacy and human rights, art and culture, and children and youth.
United Way has great information on donation opportunities. The organization “fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community.” Their facebook page keeps up with current struggles and disasters and has a link to their website where you can find local opportunities to help. They are good at sharing great articles and opportunities for you to participate in or to share with your friends with just one click. There are even local United Way Facebook and Instagram pages. We recommend following the page for the major city near you. Their main social media pages tend to focus on more global donations and issues, but when you find a local page through them, it is an amazing resource.
(there are also local United Way pages)
A fairly new volunteer website, Golden encourages people to download their app which can make finding local volunteer opportunities super easy, especially for kids and teens. A great function to their website and app is that you can add volunteer needs that you know of in your area.
Once you have found a volunteering opportunity you are interested in, you can use your social media to share it with others! Here are a few ways you can share opportunities.
- You can post on your personal pages to inform your friends. Keep in mind that if you are looking to help get more volunteers, it is better to not just inform but to invite.
- You can also send personal messages inviting friends to contribute, and have them do the same to friends they might feel might be interested.
- ost on community pages and private groups to help spread the word.
This holiday season, our families can use social media for more than selfies and family vacations; we can use it to make a difference and give back.
Katelyn King is a wife and mother of two children. She is a graduating senior at Brigham Young University-Idaho in the Marriage and Family Studies Program, and she is an advocate for parent child relationships.