During the holiday season, it isn’t uncommon for people to get the volunteering bug. With so much to be thankful for, it’s always good to give back to the community and provide assistance to those that are less fortunate. Luckily, there are a ton of amazing, fruitful volunteering opportunities in our area. Here are some important Long Island community service openings that would love a volunteer like you.
A Guide to Long Island Community Service
Ronald McDonald House of Long Island
The Ronald McDonald House, located in New Hyde Park, serves to accommodate families dealing with a sick child in one of the many nearby hospitals. This “home away from home” allows families with ill children to connect and bond with others in similar situations. Their comfort and happiness is always the main objective.
Their upwards of 120 hard-working volunteers are affectionately coined the “Heartbeat of the House.” They have four-hour shifts available every day of the week. Responsibilities and jobs range from administration, cooking, guest speaking, hospitality, event planning and auxiliary assistance. There are even volunteer opportunities for students that need community service credit or are just looking to lend a helping hand. Additional information can be found here.
With locations in Bethpage and Uniondale, Island Harvest is Long Island’s largest hunger relief non-profit organization. They rely on the dedicated work of volunteers to continue their mission of eliminating hunger and cutting down on food waste.
Some typical volunteer opportunities include fundraising, food collection and distribution, administration and nutrition education. They have over 5,000 volunteers, which equates to about 70,000 hours of service and $1.5 million in savings every year.
Long Island Crisis Center
The Long Island Crisis Center offers 24/7 free and confidential assistance to aid and empower Long Islanders who are experiencing hardship. Some of their programs include:
- 24/7 crisis support hotlines and live online chat
- LGBTQ youth counseling and support groups
- Community education workshops
- Young Latinas Initiative
- Veteran counseling
- Senior citizen workshops
At their Bellmore office, they host volunteers who step into the roles of counselors and counselor assistants. After some brief weekly training sessions, you will be fully equipped to begin your volunteering commitment that ranges from 3-6 hours per week.
Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter
If you’re an animal lover, then volunteering at the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter in Wantagh may be right for you. After you complete an orientation session, you can make your own schedule, which requires you to work at least two hours a week.
You will be expected to look after the animals and perform routine maintenance around the facilities. They also offer a foster volunteer program for families to take home a dog or cat so they can get accustomed to other animals in a household and domestic life. The shelter will provide training, food, supplies and medical care during the pet’s stay in your home.
No matter which volunteer opportunity you choose, you’ll be in for a truly rewarding experience. During the holidays, it’s always good to give back, especially to these esteemed organizations.