Guest post by HandsOn Leadership volunteer Kallie Hinton
I have thought a lot about volunteering over the past decade. I’ve been moved and inspired by stories of volunteers’ good works. I’ve browsed through many websites and brochures searching for engaging volunteer opportunities. Every once in a while, I volunteered a few hours of my time here and there, but I couldn’t seem to commit to a long-term volunteer project.
The HandsOn Leadership course motivated me to make a long-term volunteer commitment. My experience with HandsOn provided me with rewarding and edifying volunteer experiences. In the course I learned the fundamentals of how nonprofit organizations work. The knowledge I gained in the course gave me a greater appreciation for the organizations I would eventually volunteer with after the course completion. I learned new project management skills which have helped me in my nonprofit work, as well as my everyday happenings. (I schedule almost everything now, and I finally understand that five minutes late, is, well late.) I also learned how to best utilize my existing skills and personality traits in my nonprofit work.
I became aware of Seattle Works and the HandsOn program through a suggestion from a friend. In October I relocated to Seattle from the Midwest, and I was looking for a way to become involved in the community. Because of my volunteering experiences, I now feel connected to my new community and the nonprofits I volunteer with.
Through HandsOn, I am presently volunteering with two nonprofits, The World is Fun and Helping Link. At the World is Fun, I am helping to create a week-long arts project featuring international graffiti artists who will paint large-scale murals in Seattle. At Helping Link, I am currently asking potential sponsors for investments to ensure the stability of our computer and language literacy programs that educate and empower Vietnamese refugees.
I’m happy to say HandsOn has given me fulfilling volunteer experiences that I had hoped for. I am a volunteer commitment-phobe no more.
Kallie is a copy editor, writer and volunteer. Since she has moved to Seattle she has been hopped up on caffeine, she has lost at least 4 umbrellas, and she now knows what a ‘real’ mountain looks like.