Young minds are curious, and teenage is especially when high school students rebel into becoming citizens of the future. It is an impressionable age where teens idolize their favorite celebrities, parents, peer groups, and famous figures. This potent energy needs to be channeled into activities that will build their future. Becoming a volunteer with social organizations at a young age has its advantages. During these tough pandemic times, it has become imperative to maintain communication with those under self-isolation. This improves mental health and creates new connections with people from all over the world. Teens can participate in online activities that allow them to tutor young children who come from economically backward regions from developing countries. They can help impart knowledge to these kids looking forward to a bright future.
Adolescents can also volunteer with local and international organizations to provide virtual relief support to people suffering during the pandemic. By making masks out of renewable clothing, they can empathize with the community. Writing virtual thank you notes and sending out letters to those in care homes will bring about a positive change. They can even volunteer with healthcare officials working day and night under restrictions to give emotional support to the staff through video messages and talent-based performances online. High school students can initiate fundraisers that will develop their neighborhood and reward the people who tirelessly work to better humanity. They can use local force to drive donation drives for hospitals, hospice centers, mental health institutes, and environmental causes. Focusing on political issues is also a great kickstart to a college career. By starting online petitions to change policies and create new laws, the students can exercise their say in the workings of the country.
Learning to leave a legacy behind them, these virtual volunteer activities listed below are a great way for teen students to exercise their social and civic rights. They will develop leadership qualities and hone their personality towards helping the community. These volunteer services are based on a range of physical and mental talents. Anyone can become a part of the trendsetting organization or application that has been developed for the benefit of humanity. These volunteer services will allow high school students to foster a deep understanding of their peers and society at large.
1. Letters Against Isolation
Aren’t we all lonely? And especially the senior citizens, patients in care homes, and critically ill patients who need special love and attention. Letters against Isolation is an online volunteer organization started by two teenagers. They felt the need to contact their grandparents, who were isolated during the current COVID-19 crisis. The organization allows teens to sign up from any part of the world and choose the care homes and other institutes looking after the elderly to send them handwritten personal letters. Since then, the organization has gained a worldwide audience, and it has now branched out to Israel, Canada, the UK, and Australia. High school students can use this opportunity to bring smiles to the faces of people living in assisted care services.
2. United Nations Advocacy Programs
Various national and international United Nations programs encourage young minds to participate in causes that benefit and raise public awareness. The UN is also recognized for its leadership and personality development camps or virtual sessions for students. It’s a great way to connect with students from different cultures and countries. A virtual space ideal for campaigning and championing causes that address climate change, racism, bullying, and other issues related to adolescents. These various programs developed by the United Nations committee work for peace and youth-focused opportunities worldwide.
3. Be My Eyes
This noble cause can connect volunteers with low vision and blind people who need assistance for their day-to-day living. Students can connect with people with visual impairments through the Be my Eyes app and help them live dignified life. After installing the app, the volunteer can assist the blind individual in getting to know directions while being outdoors, checking prescriptions expiry dates, cooking, distinguishing colors or tasks that are being held up, using electrical appliances, and many other things through live video sessions. Volunteers may also bring tactical solutions to day-to-day issues through discussions. The application also allows volunteers to translate into local languages to reach a wider audience.
4. Translate Without Borders
This is a non-profit organization outlet that works with various government and semi-government-based foundations worldwide. This organization aims at creating a world without linguistic barriers. Often there are a set of populations, especially women from developing countries, who speak only in their local languages. In such situations, it is difficult for caregivers to distinguish their needs and to provide services and works of charity accordingly. To bridge this gap, this organization accepts the help of virtual translators to evaluate the needs of people by interpreting their spoken language. Virtual translators may help by decoding medical transcripts, local crisis management using word documentation, and identifying words from particular dialects. There are a variety of projects to choose from once you become a translator.
5. Learning Ally
Some students suffer from speech impairments and learning disabilities like dyslexia. The learning ally app has been created to listen to thousands of audio books ranging from school materials to classic novels for these specially-baled children. An exciting opportunity awaits teens who wish to volunteer and lend their voice towards creating guided audio books for fellow students. These audio books are available according to various genres and authors, and they are also categorized according to the subject, grades, and curriculum levels. Volunteers can also provide their valuable feed backs related to audio books and even narrate fictional stories for the site.
6. Missing Maps
Are you a keen observer? Do you know your neighborhood too well? Do you enjoy navigating through maps? Young minds familiar with the maps can now draw theirs using satellite images. Missing Maps is an online-based virtual mapping community that helps disaster management during a national emergency or local crisis. Volunteers can sign up on the site and create their marathon teams to fill in missing details about their local neighborhoods on a virtual map. This site can be accessed from any part of the world to make edits and fill in details remotely about local organizations, schools, street names, local sites, hospitals, evacuation centers, and community hangouts. This specific information can then come in handy during an emergency crisis, which can become helpful in aid operations by world help foundations.
7. Smithsonian Digital Volunteers
For the love of history and everything that has been written, the Smithsonian digital volunteer program allows individuals to add footnotes, audio recordings, manuscripts, biodiversity specimen labels, information from personal diaries, and knowledge about events that have yet not been recorded into the already existing vast data. Avid biologists, bird watchers, nature lovers, and bio-diversity students who wish to extend their valuable information can become volunteers through this online program. They can also help review, transcribe, and translate historical documents available in the archives of the largest humanity-based museum—a unique opportunity to access the most up-to-date historical material and edit them with valuable inputs.
An excellent initiative for teenagers to give back to the community by actively volunteering for teaching aid services for the underprivileged. There are often vulnerable students from poor economic backgrounds, and they lack primary education. These students are then connected virtually with teenage volunteers who have taken on the responsibility of coaching and guiding the student through academic courses. It is a free platform for volunteers to sign up and choose a particular student to teach online. This is an equal opportunity for high school students to improve their tutoring skills and mastery of their subjects by allowing access to safe education to their peers through a virtual classroom.
9. National Sexual Assault Online Hotline
An excellent opportunity for students who wish to participate and volunteer for mental health advocacy. The National Sexual Assault Online Hotline is run by the RAINN – Rape, Assault & Incest National Network initiative. In many cases, young victims of violence are afraid to reveal their identity and the nature of their crime to anyone. During such times, they need a friendly counselor who can assist them in overcoming their fear and reporting the crime that has been committed. Students can volunteer with RAINN and become counselors to chat anonymously with rape and sexual abuse victims. The identity of the victims will be protected, and the student volunteers will receive exclusive training to help them psychologically.
Nabor is like a virtual student exchange program that allows teenagers from developed countries to connect with their counterparts from Africa, Latin America, and Asia. Teenage volunteers can collaborate on ideas, innovative plans to improve education opportunities, implement successful social experiments and create virtual sessions to discuss solutions to climate change crisis, population disparities, economic lessons, and leadership orientations for their counterparts. It is an excellent platform to connect with like-minds across the globe and create a difference in society.