You could spend the summer just hanging out with your friends. Or you could spend part of it supporting a good cause, pursuing your interests, and amping up your resume at the same time. That's what we call a win-win!
Below are some types of volunteer work that don't require any previous experience. In all of them, you'll find numerous opportunities beyond the job description to expand your skills — from office and computer work, to advertising and public relations, to adding valuable connections to your professional network.
Help build or repair homes for people who can't afford to do it themselves. Construction experience is helpful but not necessary as you can learn on the job (they even have a special program for women). You can also learn team building and leadership skills.
Caring for and socializing with animals is just the beginning of volunteer activities at the shelter. You can also provide administrative support or assist prospective pet adopters. If you're thinking of starting a pet-sitting or dog-walking business, these new pet parents are a built-in pool of potential clients.
This one's a natural for nature lovers. Keep the environment clean, learn and share knowledge with visitors, help research scientists and more. A nice perk: volunteers with 250 hours of service get a free pass to all National Parks.
Coaching a sports team, teaching literacy courses or running a committee will be an outstanding addition to your resume, under the category of leadership experience. Check your local YMCA for opportunities to work with both adults and children.
Museums, Historic Sites and Libraries
If you're interested in the arts or history, this is a great chance to acquire knowledge while helping out with administrative chores, public events or designing/writing advertising materials. Once you've built up your knowledge, you could become a tour guide or event planner.
Help seriously ill children's wishes come true. Volunteer opportunities include wish granter, office worker, fundraiser, translator, speaker or community event assistant.
Every campaign needs dozens, if not hundreds, of volunteers to handle the phones or email, raise money, hand out fliers and more. If you want to become a politician someday, the connections you make here will be priceless.
This is just the tip of the volunteer iceberg. Let these ideas inspire you to find the perfect way to grow your skill set while you contribute to the community.