4 Easy Ways to Help Others Without Leaving Home

Published on November 11, 2021 in , ,

Volunteering is one of those aspects of life that many people wish they had more time for. But between full-time jobs, schedules packed with afterschool activities, or other family obligations, it can be difficult to find time in the day to give back. 

Fortunately, volunteering doesn’t have to mean a full day of work or a long-term commitment. The past year has spurred the creation of many more virtual volunteer opportunities that can work with nearly any schedule.  

These virtual options are perfect for busy individuals, as well as those who don’t yet feel comfortable participating in in-person activities due to the ongoing pandemic.  

Below, we’ve outlined four flexible, virtual ways to volunteer that can help you make good on your personal goal to give back.  

Utilize your skills 


The Greater Detroit Center for Working Families Financial Coach Jesica Rubio at SER Metro helps take in tax return information. SER Metro serves as a “drop and go” tax site in Detroit.

Making a difference is easy when you use the skills you’ve developed at work or in your free time to make life better for others. Whether you are a top fundraiser for your child’s school, or a top salesperson at work, you can volunteer as a fundraiser to help organizations like the Mint Artists Guild — which supports teen artists in Detroit — meet their yearend goals and start 2022 off strong.  

If social media is more your speed, volunteer to assist Interim Hospice of Oakland County with its YouTube channel.  

If you’re a recruiter or HR professional, our friends at Streetwise Partners are also seeking volunteers to help individuals in the job market hone their networking and interview skills.  

Answer the call

United Way’s 2-1-1 call center operators take calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week from people in need. One of the top needs we hear from callers is housing assistance.

United Way’s 2-1-1 call center is the go-to resource for community members in need. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, our 2-1-1 team has fielded more calls than ever — connecting individuals to resources from our database of more than 30,000 partners, agencies, and programs.  

We’re looking for volunteers to assist with answering calls from the comfort of their own home. All you need is a computer, a headset, and an internet connection. Volunteers are asked to commit to one three-hour shift per week through the end of the year. 

Create a kit 

From infants to seniors, our custom DIY Kits make it easy to give back at your convenience. Enlist the help of friends or coworkers to purchase essential items before packing your kits for delivery. Make kit-building a family affair by incorporating it into holiday events. Now is also a good time to create school supply kits to help teachers restock on pencils, folders, and cleaning supplies to prepare classrooms for the year ahead.  

Pick up a book 


Reading to kids is one way you can make a difference as a United Way volunteer this spring.

Volunteering can be as simple as clicking the record button tonight on your phone. Brilliant Detroit is seeking virtual story readers to increase access to books and bedtime stories. Settle in and share one of your childhood favorites like “The Little Engine That Could,” or record a modern favorite like “Grumpy Monkey” as you read to your child.  

If you’d like to make a longer-term commitment to increasing literacy, consider becoming a virtual tutor with Brilliant Detroit. The program kicks off in January and trainings will be available every Thursday through Dec. 9. 

For more volunteer ideas, visit our Volunteer Portal