Virtual Volunteering: A Catchafire Volunteer Experience

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Cat volunteering online; virtual volunteering

Photo by Daveblog https://www.flickr.com/photos/daveblog/2050611763/

Everyone who gives their time or money does so in exchange for something they value. So it’s great that Catchafire, plus a little research, are likely to put you in a volunteer gig that benefits you and an organization or cause that you support. Read on for my glowing review of the volunteer experience.

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Virtual Volunteering: 3 Keys to Finding a Good Fit

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1. Start with short-term projects

For long distance volunteering, look for clearly-defined projects with “deliverables” and deadlines. Avoid roles with lists of duties and open-ended timelines. Committing to a long-term volunteer position with an organization you’ve never worked with before is kind of like going on a cross-country road trip with a person you have only met on the internet. Maybe you won’t hate it? Maybe you won’t want to bail in the middle of the trip and feel like you wasted your time?

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Online Connection Basics: Who

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Who are you interested in talking to?

The point of blogging and being involved in social media is conversation, not one way communication.

Joining in the conversations happening on social media and writing online content gives you access to new groups of people, and the opportunity to spend time learning about their ideas and language.

And here is the totally simple key: go to the place online where those people are already having a conversation and join in. Or even just listen. It’s simple, and it’s more effective than reinventing the wheel by trying to bring people to your personal website and make the conversation revolve around you.

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5 Experts with Great Advice for Connecting Online

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A roundup of expert tips for connecting to people with online tools!

These resources lean toward American style networking, so I’d love to hear your thoughts on whether the advice here is specific to American culture or broadly relevant.

1. Anne Ditmeyer with excellent, specific tips for “turning social and online connections into real relationships.”

I highly recommend giving a listen to her interview with Grace Bonney of Design Sponge if you’ve moved Internationally or are planning to do so in the future.

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