Nurturing Hearts of Service: The Power of Early Volunteering and Discovering Perfect Opportunities for Your Kids

Why is it important to start volunteering at an early age?

  1.  Personal Development

Volunteering provides teenagers with opportunities to develop essential life skills such as leadership, teamwork, communication, problem-solving, and empathy. Through volunteering, teenagers can learn to work with diverse groups of people, understand different perspectives, and gain a sense of responsibility.

  1. Civic Engagement: 

Teenagers who volunteer are inspired to take an active role in their communities and advance the greater good. Teenagers who volunteer gain a feeling of civic duty and comprehend the value of giving back to society. It gives them a sense of empowerment and demonstrates their capacity to have a good influence on their surroundings.

  1.  Career Exploration

Most kids at this age are only beginning to consider their career goals. Teenagers can explore several career choices and acquire useful experience in a variety of professions by volunteering. They can identify their hobbies and interests, learn about various industries, and acquire transferable skills for future employment. Teenagers may enhance their resumes and stand out in job interviews and college applications by volunteering.

  1.  Social Awareness and Empathy:

 Teenagers who volunteer are exposed to a variety of people and societal issues, broadening their horizons. They acquire empathy and compassion as they grow more conscious of the struggles that other people encounter. The growth of well-rounded people who are more welcoming and open-minded results from this enhanced understanding and empathy.

Enriching Volunteer Experiences for Kids of All Ages

1. Elementary School Age (6-11 years old):

 At this age, children can participate in volunteer activities that are simple, hands-on, and age-appropriate. Examples include organizing a neighbourhood clean-up, helping at a food drive, participating in a charity walk or run, assisting in animal shelters (under supervision), or creating cards or crafts for hospital patients or nursing home residents.

2. Middle School Age (11-14 years old): 

Middle school-aged children can engage in more structured volunteer activities that require a bit more responsibility and independence. They can assist in community gardens, mentor younger children, participate in local fundraising events, volunteer at libraries or schools, or contribute to environmental conservation efforts.

3. High School Age (14-18 years old):

High school-aged teenagers have a wider range of volunteer opportunities available to them. They can engage in more complex and long-term commitments. They may volunteer at hospitals, homeless shelters, youth organizations, and museums, or participate in international volunteer programs. They can also contribute their skills in areas such as tutoring, event planning, social media management, or web design for nonprofit organizations.

Recommended Sources

York Region Educational Services (YRES)

YRES is a non-profit charitable organization that provides students in York Region with amazing educational resources. They offer more business and educational side opportunities. The website has clear instructions for application and videos of past passionate volunteers to give you a brief overview of what it will be like to volunteer in these programs. 

Their program includes:

  • Web development
  • Business management
  • Social media marketing
  • Volunteer management
  • In-person Small Group activity/project
  • Peers activity 

At YRES, there are both remote and in-person volunteer opportunities, and you will be able to engage with more than 400+ other volunteers. 


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