Your retirement doesn’t have to be dull and assuming you’re in good health, you’ve reached the age where you can devote some free time to volunteer projects and there are so many to choose from!
We’ve come up with a great list of opportunities for personal development in retirement. Check them out!
Humane Societies And Animal Shelters
If you love working with animals then animal shelters, rescues, and human societies always have volunteer programs that are hunting for people to make a difference in the lives of animals.
If you can’t get out of the house to volunteer, you might consider acting as a “foster parent” to a rescue animal until a new home can be found for it.
You may even find that these places can offer low-stress paid jobs too, if not, check out these options for low-stress paid work.
You will need some previous legal experience if you want to take advantage of volunteer opportunities for legal advocates.
Typical volunteer duties include advocating for foster kids, minorities, victims of domestic, abuse, etc.
Nearly all non-profits desire people with legal experience for their board of directors too. Though that’s quite a bit more work than taking up a hobby that could also pay you money.
We’d completely understand if you’re fed up with politics but if you want to volunteer to make a difference in the way that your community or state is run, then one of the best ways to volunteer is to take part in political campaigns, and political action committees.
It doesn’t matter which party you support, there’s always a campaign out there with similar interests that would love senior volunteers to take part in their programs.
If you want volunteer organizations that are a bit more fun for volunteers and more like a hobby for seniors than a job, you can’t go wrong with getting involved in tours or other forms of guiding.
From your local national park to a museum, historical sites, etc. you can find docent programs that provide volunteers with training and education to help lead tours and teach local communities about their conservation efforts and services.
If you are a retired nurse, EMT, pharmacist, or physician you might want to consider being a volunteer in the Medical Reserve Corps where volunteers are called upon to help out around the world in disaster zones.
You could also train with the Red Cross to be a volunteer who specializes in international disaster relief.
Hunger Relief agencies such as Northwest Harvest welcome volunteers to help out their fellow man when they’re struggling to find enough to eat.
Meals on Wheels is also happy to take on a volunteer to help serve other seniors with meals.
You might also contact large organizations such as Oxfam which specialize in famine relief. They always need volunteers too.
If you want to volunteer and have an amazing time, you can always combine being a volunteer with a vacation – it’s called voluntourism and if you have a quick Google, you’ll find many seniors do this and that there are incredible numbers of opportunities to do so.
It requires no training and there are no “senior corps” of voluntourists, you just need the will to spend some time in a non-profit overseas prepared to do some community service that benefits the quality of life for the locals.
Volunteering With Children
If you’re not living near your grandchildren why not consider a volunteer opportunity where you work with children?
The Big Brothers, Big Sisters program is a fantastic opportunity to do some volunteer work with kids and become a positive influence in their lives.
Your local children’s hospital would be happy to see you volunteering in your local community too.
Volunteering With The Military, Veterans, and Military Families
The USO is a great place to volunteer if you want a program that helps out military personnel and their families.
You might find yourself working on a program locally or even abroad! There’s a lot of variety in helping the USO.
They want to encourage everyone to become “A Force Behind The Forces” which is a pretty cool slogan and makes us want to volunteer just reading it.
Habitat For Humanity
This organization provides a service with (rather than for) people who need a home and shelter.
Their volunteers work side-by-side with people all over the world, teaching them the skills to build their own homes and to care for and repair those homes too.
This helps establish a sense of pride and community that will help people support themselves in the long run.
You don’t have to make a full-time commitment to make a real difference in your retirement.
There are so many places in this country and in other countries where your life experience and skills can make a real difference and we hope that our list has given you some great ideas as to where to start!