These tips are brought to you by Hands On Greater Portland. 

Volunteering as a family can seem overwhelming- but it’s really not! Here is a quick guide to help you find the perfect volunteer opportunities to fit your family.

1. How old is everyone? The age of your little ones or not so little ones makes a huge difference in connecting with the right project. All of our Hands On Managed projects list the minimum age of volunteers allowed on the project right in the title, so it’s easy to see whether or not it will work for your family.

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If you have children between the ages of 0-10, then our Good for Kids projects will be the perfect fit. These projects are geared specifically to this age group, with you present and engaged in the work too. Keep an eye out for “Kids!” also listed in the project title to know if it’s specifically a Good for Kids project. For more details, click here: Volunteer With Your Kids!

Do you have a motivated teen at home? Or need to help them find their motivation? Get them connected with a project now so that they can start recording required community service hours once school is back in session. We even have a system to help them track their good deeds: School Community Service Volunteering

2. What are your interests? Perhaps your family is new to volunteer work, or perhaps it’s something you’ve done on occasion, but haven’t found a great fit. Either way, it will help you keep the tradition going if everyone enjoys the work that they’re doing.

While all volunteer work supporting our local nonprofits is valuable and needed, remember that there are many different ways of engaging. A great way to identify how your interests might align with a volunteer opportunity is to check out our homepage and take a look at our issue area icons.

Once you’ve selected your project, be sure to read through the project description thoroughly. This will tell you more details, such as if the work you will be doing directly interfaces with the nonprofit’s clients or not. If you have additional questions about the project, scroll to the bottom and click the “email” icon next to the opportunity leader’s name. You are then able to connect with them about the specific project you’re interested in attending.

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Not sure about bringing the whole family out to a project? Browse our DIY projects to bring volunteering to you! These projects allow for creativity and flexibility – work at home and on your own time. Once you’re finished, you can deliver the items you’ve made to a local nonprofit who will benefit greatly from your hard work.

3. How many of you are attending? Is your whole family interested in going out on projects? Maybe sometimes friends or extended family want to participate too. Does it sound like too many details to coordinate? We have your solution: Create a Volunteer Team!

As the primary point person, or Team Captain, you have the ability to sign up a large (or small) group of people for a project. Only minimal contact information is required and you can manage all of the details through your account. You may also add as many people to your team as you’d like. When you go to sign up for a project (be sure to click “or sign up as a team”) you can select one or more team members for that specific project.

Even if it’s just you and your child attending the project, go ahead and utilize the team function. This will allow you both to quickly sign up for the project and ensure child online safety (no specific information is stored for your child when you add them to your team).

Get started volunteering with Hands On Greater Portland by creating an account and volunteer team with us today! Find fun and unique volunteer opportunities near you by visiting our website at www.handsonportland.org, then click on the Project Calendar to see what is happening this week. Need a hand? Give us a call at 503.200.3355.

Now you have your quick reference toolkit to volunteer together – excited yet?! It’s so important to instill a sense of gratitude and desire to give back in our young people. How better to teach our kids to be good citizens than to encourage positive stewardship of our community? Empower. Encourage. Do Good.

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