Connect to your community through volunteering

The clouds have lifted, the birds are singing, and the grass is beginning to green. Get your shovels and gardening gloves ready—it’s volunteer season!

Thanks to a generous sponsorship from SymQuest, United Way of Northwest Vermont is connecting passionate community volunteers and business volunteer groups with local nonprofits in need of extra hands this spring through a simple, online tool.

Volunteer Connection is a website that enables regional nonprofit organizations to post their volunteer needs to an audience of thousands of potential volunteers. To do this, an organization creates a free profile and adds its logo, contact information, a brief description of its mission, photos, and individual volunteer “job descriptions.” Then, community members can choose volunteer opportunities through a desired nonprofit organization’s profile, or by simply browsing the database for volunteer job descriptions.

“Giving back into the community is one of our core values at SymQuest. Aligning with United Way’s Volunteer Connection program was a good match for us because it will allow us to continue to expand our efforts and provide support to those in need,” said Meg Fleming, President at SymQuest.

“SymQuest’s sponsorship helps makes it possible for us to advance our mission of building a stronger region by connecting volunteers to their community, and by helping organizations recruit outstanding volunteers,” said Megan Bridges, Community Impact Coordinator for United Way of Northwest Vermont.

Spring is a great time to get out and enjoy the weather through a variety of outdoor projects. Here are some local volunteer projects to help you feel good while giving back:

Do you like kids, fun and sun? Burlington Parks, Recreation & Waterfront is looking for volunteers ages 15 and older to staff 2019 Kids Day on May 11. Help make the parade and event run smoothly by volunteering as a parade lead, staff the information table, assist vendors, and more. Volunteers get a free t-shirt and lunch.

Green thumbs unite! Vermont Youth Conversation Corps needs groups of 2 to 10 people to help with spring planting and greenhouse work at their farm in Richmond, Vermont. Get your hands dirty with seeding and prepping the greenhouses that will eventually produce food for their Health Care Share program.

Work on your summer tan while helping kids succeed. Camp Exclamation Point, a nonprofit camp that serves rural, underserved Vermont youth, is looking for a certified lifeguard for its week-long summer camp in August. The position involves lifeguarding at either the pool or lake and teaching morning swimming lessons.

Cuddle cute felines and make some new (furry) friends! Franklin County Animal Rescue is looking for an adoption assistant to help homeless cats find their fur-ever families. This job requires a couple hours of training and making follow-up phone calls. This position is not outdoors, but—kittens!

To browse the entire database of local volunteer opportunities, or to register your nonprofit organization’s profile, visit Volunteer Connection today to get started.

Alison DeFisher