Students entering the job market have a 27 percent higher chance of being hired if they have volunteer experience. Volunteering teaches valuable job skills, improves social networks, provides real world experience and demonstrates an individual’s ability to work in teams. Below are a few examples of Idahoans who turned volunteering into a career.
Elizabeth Corsentino was a Boise State University student who volunteered at Radio Boise because of her love for music. Through networking at her position, she met the Treefort festival director who hired her to be part of the original founding group for the annual music festival.
“Volunteering is the best way to develop skills and network in the field you’re passionate about,” Corsentino said.
Corsentino now organizes and manages the volunteers for Treefort and is the volunteer coordinator for Radio Boise.
So you want to volunteer this holiday season but might not know where to start? Here are a few volunteer opportunities in Idaho this holiday season.
Winter Garden aGlow, Boise
Talk about having a great view while you’re volunteering. Winter Garden aGlow takes place at the Idaho Botanical Garden in Boise from Nov. 26 to New Year’s Day. The Winter Garden aGlow is a walk through a Christmas light and decoration show boasting more than 300,000 displayed lights. Volunteer shifts are 4.5 hours, and there is a variety of available positions varying from taking tickets, monitoring paths, serving complimentary cocoa and cider, handing out candy canes and many more opportunities. A full list can be found at http://idahobotanicalgarden.org/winter-garden-aglow/. Contact: Karen Christeson at (208) 275-8605, email@example.com
Secret Santa Volunteers, Pocatello
Want to help out with Secret Santa but your budget might be a little too tight to participate? The Salvation Army in Pocatello is looking for volunteers at its Angel Tree site in the Pine Ridge Mall until Dec. 24. Volunteers will collect information from people wishing to participate in the program as well as collect and document the gifts brought in. Volunteer positions also are available to help with sorting, packing and distributing donated gifts. Contact Information: Julie Christiansen, (208) 232-5318, Julie.firstname.lastname@example.org
Volunteers have higher odds of finding employment in today’s job market. A recent study by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) found that volunteers have a 27 percent higher likelihood of finding a job out of being out of work than non-volunteers.
Yes. You can volunteer while you receive unemployment insurance benefits as long as it does not interfere with your work search availability and your time spent volunteering is less than full time.
Keep in mind that you cannot volunteer to perform work for a private sector employer for duties they normally would have to pay an employee to do. This link provides more information on the law and volunteering.
Why should you volunteer while you are looking for a job?
- Help you develop new skills and enhance current skills.
- Provide you with opportunities that match your interests and skills.
- Enhance your resume.
- Show motivation, dedication and initiative.
- Provide valuable networking opportunities.
- Provide you with a sense of achievement and personal fulfillment.
- Improve your sense of well-being and increase self-esteem.
Volunteering can benefit the community by
- Expanding the opportunities available for people looking for jobs.
- Increasing the number of volunteers in the community.
- Enriching lives while enhancing the community.
- Providing a skilled and talented volunteer pool.
- Helping bring community needs into focus.
Learn how to find the right role for you.
Ready to begin? Here are some organizations to consider.