While volunteering in the Global South may seem like the most obvious way of using service to address global justice issues, it is not practical for most individuals to commit to a life of international service. You can continue to experience the power of community-based changemaking by volunteering locally and making an impact closer to home.
Whether as a mentor in a community center, an office assistant at a human rights organization, a tutor for new immigrants or students in an under-resourced community or a friend for someone in a nursing home, there are infinite opportunities to regularly do direct service work in your community. Challenge yourself to work outside of your usual community if possible.
Examples of past AJWS volunteers' projects:
- Shani, a Volunteer Summer participant, organized an AJWS Alternative Breaks trip at her college with her Hillel.
- Jennie, a Volunteer Summer alumna, served as a fellow of AVODAH: The Jewish Service Corps in Washington, D.C. after she graduated from college.
- Joan, a Volunteer Corps alumna, was inspired by her three-month assignment in Uganda to join the Peace Corps.
Resources for your project:
For local service opportunities, try:
- Repair the World
- United We Serve: The President's Call for National Service
For long-term domestic service, try:
For international service opportunities, try:
If the resources above do not suit your needs, make a list of organizations in your area. In addition to local organizations, most major national and international organizations need help in their offices. Contact them and follow up if you have not received a response within a week. If you don't want to volunteer alone, find a friend to do it with you or organize a group at your synagogue or workplace.