10+ Ways To Volunteer From Home

Written on 07/01/2020
Volunteer New York!

Volunteering has always been a great way to stay active while giving back to your community. But how can you help when you're stuck inside?

There are actually a lot of ways to contribute to a good cause from the comforts of your own home. Here are some ideas:

Ditch Your Devices

Appropriate for: ages 13-15+

With many teachers offering classes and doctors scheduling appointments online, technology is more important than ever. Sadly, not everyone has access to the equipment that would allow them to connect to these services.

This is where you come in! Got an old smartphone, laptop, or tablet collecting dust in your home? Simply wipe it clean—literally—by erasing the old data, restoring it to factory settings, and giving it a generous pass with a disinfecting cloth, then ship it to a senior or a student in need. Not only would you be helping someone access educational or medical services, but you'd have a solid excuse for upgrading your hardware. Win-win!

Give Gowns For Good

Appropriate for: ages 17+

COVID-19 pretty much put the kibosh on graduation ceremonies this year (boooo). Why not put that unused gown to good use by donating it to a doctor or nurse in need? Snap a final selfie for the family scrapbook, then wash and ship it to Gowns4Good, which is supplying healthcare professionals with alternatives to traditional personal protective equipment (PPE). That's an A+ in our book!

Become a Social Media Ambassador

Appropriate for: ages 14-16+

Show off your social media savvy to help raise awareness for a cause you really care about. Many of these programs and services directly help teens and young people who are struggling to find the right resources, and you can be the one to help connect them. Sharing is caring!

Get Artsy

Appropriate for: ages 13+

Let your inner Bob Ross shine by drawing or painting a work of art. Your masterpiece will then be delivered to local hospice patients as part of a "Thinking of You" package to help spread some cheer.

Press Play

Appropriate for: ages 13+

For those who prefer to be in front of a camera (we're looking at you, TikTok stars!), this video project is right up your alley. Record a fun and inspirational message to let seniors at a nursing home know that you're thinking of them. 

You've Got Mail

Appropriate for: ages 16+

Veterans and seniors who are self-isolating or in quarantine don't often get to see their friends and families. Keep them from feeling lonely by penning letters and words of gratitude. Who doesn't love to get mail from a surprise pen pal once in a while?

Become a Virtual Tutor

Appropriate for: ages 15+

Share your love of learning with kids who might need extra help with their homework this summer. Hop on a video chat for one-on-one practice on a variety of subjects, from math and science to English and social studies. (Please note: matches are based on availability and preferences, so not all volunteers may find a match right away. Volunteers must complete a mandatory screening process and interview first.)

Bundles of Joy

Appropriate for: ages 13+

For those with knitting or crocheting skills, this has to be the sweetest volunteering activity ever! Craft cozy blankets and hats to help keep newborn babies warm. Your cuddly creations will be added to gift baskets that are delivered to new moms.

Won't You Be My Neighbor?

Appropriate for: ages 13+

Just because you're volunteering at home doesn't mean you can't check in on the people around you! Take a stroll down the sidewalk and deliver these Window Wellness Kits to your elderly or immunocompromised neighbors. The color-coded cards can be placed in their windows as a socially distant way to show you how they're doing. Green means A-OK; yellow signifies that they need supplies or an errand; and red means there's an emergency.

Join the Masquerade

Appropriate for: ages 13+

Protective face masks are crucial for slowing the spread of viruses and keeping essential workers and our most at-risk friends safe. Want to help? Just grab some fabric and elastic and sew your own masks—bonus points for cool colors and prints!

How to make masks:
Check out these tips and instructions from the CDC about making and wearing cloth face masks.

Where to donate masks:
Westchester County

Rockland County

Turn your home into a mask-making hub: