Volunteering can help youth meet new people, find out more about themselves and become more dependable and responsible. Volunteering can make youth feel good about themselves and what they are doing. The best part is that all this happens while youth are giving something to someone in need.
Through volunteering young people gain experience that will help later in finding a paying job. Youth will be introduced to adults who can recommend them to a future employer.
Encourage your children or youth you work with to volunteer and get involved in their communities. Youth can check with schools, libraries or religious organizations about volunteer opportunities.
For more information about volunteer opportunities within the community, see the list of agencies below.
Here are some questions you can suggest young people think about when looking for a volunteer position:
- Do they meet the required minimum age?
- Is it accessible from school, home or work and what transportation arrangements will be needed?
- Are the volunteer opportunities interesting to them and can fit within their time schedule & other commitments?
- Is training provided and is it required?
- How much time is needed to do the job?
Youth can be actively and positively involved with others in our community in addressing community concerns. It's important for young people to stand up for what they believe, and participate in shaping and improving our community's understanding of youth. Through participation, youth can be effective at reaching their peers, bring an important perspective to program planning, and bring needed resources to programs. Active youth participation can be a valuable experience for youth as well as adults who work with them.
Programs to involve youth in youth participation activities and assist them in developing their leadership skills, include:
American Red Cross - West Ontario Office
Youth volunteer opportunities including Red Cross Youth Crew; instruction in first aid, CPR, aquatics, babysitting.
American Red Cross in the Finger Lakes
(315)789-1522 or (315)568-9436
Youth volunteer and service opportunities include FLYER - promoting healthy behaviors and HIV prevention (peer educators are 8th-12th grades); health and safety classroom or group presentations that include
Boys and Girls Club of Geneva
Recreational activities are provided as a way to build relationships with children with the goal of enhanced youth development.
Community Action Partnership
Provide assistance to families regarding homelessness, domestic violence, educational advocacy.
Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ontario County 4-H Youth Development Program
A variety of training and activity programs including 4-H programs.
Literacy Volunteers of America
Volunteers work one-on-one with adults seeking to improve their reading skills.
MISS Foundation provides immediate and ongoing support to grieving families, empowerment through community volunteerism opportunities, public policy and legislative action, and programs to reduce infant and toddler death through research and education.
Ontario County Youth Bureau
The Youth Bureau provides funding to service providers in the community that meet the needs of youth and families.
Ontario County Youth Court
Typical cases include petit larceny, criminal mischief, trespass, unauthorized use of a vehicle, low level drug crimes, underage possession of alcohol. Youth Court does not handle cases of violence, or sexual harassment.
Reality Check is a youth empowerment movement fighting the manipulative marketing practices of the tobacco industry through a variety of activities.