The Importance of Volunteering in Your Community
Finding volunteer opportunities in Atlanta was one of the first things I did when I moved here- getting involved was how I built my community, made friends, and felt a sense of belonging after moving. Now that our world has shifted in 2020 and with COVID, volunteering is just as (if not more) important to me. Volunteering in Atlanta might look different this year, but there are still plenty of opportunities to give back to the Atlanta community safely.
Personally, I volunteer regularly through my church and its outreach, donate to my church and college campus ministry, and do work at homeless shelters. I also try to use my blogging platforms to promote local community businesses and giving opportunities- and that’s why I’m posting about this today. 🙂
I know this isn’t a normal “things to do” post and that most bloggers are posting Christmas gift guides right now. But volunteering in Atlanta is honestly one of my favorite things to do- and giving back to the community is the best gift you can give (sorry that’s cheesy, but it’s true!). There are people in Atlanta who need our help- even in 2020, we all still have the opportunity to give back and make a positive change in our Atlanta community!
Places to Volunteer in Atlanta in 2020 During COVID
At first it seemed like a challenge to volunteer in Atlanta during COVID- in 2020, most opportunities aren’t available and most organizations that are open don’t seem to be allowing new volunteers to sign up.
However, I did some research and found a few places that are accepting volunteers this year- and most have virtual or contact-less opportunities. If you don’t feel comfortable volunteering in-person, I provided organizations that are accepting gifts for drop off or monetary donations, as well.
I’m so excited to share this list with you- these organizations need our help more than ever before after this year. Here are the organizations that I found with volunteer opportunities in Atlanta in 2020, despite COVID.
Help Build the Atlanta Beltline
One of the coolest volunteer opportunities in Atlanta is to help build the Atlanta Beltline- this is next on my list. I love to spend the day on the Beltline, but the pathway that connects the city is more than just a car-free route to breweries!
- About: As one of the largest, most wide-ranging urban redevelopment programs in the United States, the Atlanta BeltLine is the catalyst for making Atlanta a global beacon for equitable, inclusive, and sustainable city life.
- Volunteer: There are many ways to volunteer, from beautification, to becoming an ambassador, volunteering at the BeltLine Center on the Eastside Trali, to becoming a tour guide for bus or bike tours.
- Link: https://beltline.org/get-involved/individual-volunteering/
Donations Only Giving: Help Foster Children in Atlanta
- About: Atlanta’s Angels’ mission is to walk alongside children in foster care and their caretakers through intentional giving, relationship building, and mentorship. They have two programs: the Love Box program matches dedicated volunteers with children in foster care and their families, and the Dare To Dream program offers an opportunity to individually mentor an aging out or at-risk youth in foster care.
- Donate: Currently, Atlanta Angels is seeking monetary donations here.
- Link: https://www.atlantaangels.org/
Organizations in Atlanta with Many Different Volunteering Opportunities
Hands on On and United Way are two well known Atlanta organizations with many different volunteer opportunities. They both provide volunteers with a diverse list of ways to give back to the community- some opportunities are virtual, while some are in-person.
Hands On Atlanta
- About: Hands On Atlanta connects changemakers to nonprofits and schools in need, while engaging socially responsible companies to help make a difference in our community.
- Volunteer: Hands On has a lot of COVID relief efforts: volunteers can host workshops, mentor youth virtually, host virtual dinners, make PPE, and donate blood.
- Link: https://www.handsonatlanta.org/relief#home
- About: United Way aims to engage and bring together people and resources to drive sustainable improvements in the well-being of children, families and individuals in the community.
- Volunteer: United Way has blood drives, and needs toy shop volunteers, meal donations, tutors, remote volunteers for Habitat for Humanity, and Atlanta Community Food Bank donations.
- Link: https://www.unitedwayatlanta.org/upcoming-volunteer-opportunities/
Atlanta Volunteer Opportunites at Animal Shelters
Atlanta Humane Society
- About: The Atlanta Humane Society is a no-kill shelter providing 60,000 animal care points each year through sheltering and adoption, veterinary care, and community outreach.
- Volunteer: They are now accepting volunteers in the West Midtown location. The Atlanta Humane Society needs volunteers for socializing future companions, community engagement, administrative support, fostering animals, and shelter medicine assistance.
- Link: https://atlantahumane.org/volunteer/
- About: Fur Kids is Georgia’s largest no kill animal shelter and rescue organization
- Volunteer: Volunteers are needed in Cumming, GA for the main cat shelter. Opportunities include ambassadors that greet the public, answer phones, and handle merchandise sales, and cleaners. They also need volunteers for the PetSmart Mall of Georgia and Petco Alpharetta locations.
- Link: https://furkids.org/volunteer#
Assist Victims of Domestic Violence in Atlanta
Women’s Resource Center to End Domestic Violence
- About: The WRCDV’s mission is to create a society in which domestic violence no longer exists by meeting the immediate and long-term needs of the diverse community of battered women and their children with programs that promote safety, compassion, connection, advocacy, and prevention.
- Volunteer: The WRCDV is now accepting applications for the following positions: Crisis Line Advocate, Safe House Advocate, and Children’s advocate. These roles are vital to helping the WRCDV serve the Atlanta community.
- Link: https://www.wrcdv.org/volunteer
Atlanta Volunteer Opportunites to Help End Homelessness
Our House Georgia
- About: Our House’s mission is to end the cycle of homelessness for families by providing shelter for families and education for children. They address the root causes of homelessness and ensure every family that leaves Our House has the tools needed to achieve lasting self-sufficiency.
- Volunteer: Our house needs virtual storytellers, meal hosts, fundraisers, and people to donate supplies or consider monetary donations.
- Donate: laundry detergent, clorox wipes, paper towels, hand soaps, bleach, kleenex, baby soap, baby wipes, deodorant, cantu shampoo/conditioner
- Link: https://ourhousega.org/get-involved/
Environmental Advocacy Volunteering in Atlanta
- About: Trees Atlanta works to mitigate Atlanta’s tree loss, protect forests, and increase Atlanta’s tree canopy.
- Volunteer: Volunteers can help with storytimes, participate in workshops, do plant care on the Beltline, and of course volunteer to do tree plantings. Every saturday from 9AM-12PM, Trees Atlanta does tree planting, tree care, or forest restoration projects around different Atlanta neighborhoods.
- Link: https://www.treesatlanta.org/
Final Thoughts on Volunteering in Atlanta in 2020 During COVID
I know that sometimes things can seem out of our control in this crazy rollercoaster of a year. For me, volunteering and getting involved in the Atlanta community is something that is within my grasp of making this year just a little bit better. I truly believe that we always have the chance to make the world a better place- and when I’m feeling down about this year, helping someone else always makes me feel more positive, too.
Even in 2020, we all still have the opportunity to give back to our Atlanta community- I hope that you’ll consider one of these volunteer opportunities as we near the end of this year.
All photos on this blog post are courtesy of IEYAM Photo.