Nonprofits are a little wary of recruiting high school-age help, notes Holly McGraw, director of youth programs at
. And some organizations just don’t know how to work with these young volunteers.
No worries, McGraw says: "They have a ton of energy and excitement and they could become potentially lifelong volunteers and agents of change for [your] cause. It's helping the next generation to become people who give back to their communities."
That’s one of the reasons Pittsburgh Cares is happy to run the first volunteer fair at the local spring conference of the Pennsylvania Association of Student Council (PASC) March 23 at South Fayette High School – and why Pittsburgh Cares is asking more nonprofits to come to the fair and recruit. Twenty organizations among Cares’ 500 partners have signed up, and there’s room for at least 10 more.
PASC should draw 700 students from public and private middle and high schools in Allegheny County, many of them as gung ho on service and volunteering as any students around. McGraw is hoping to fill the fair with nonprofits by March 2; call 412-715-9451 or email her here
to get a registration form.
“Events like this wipe the fears away" from both sides, she says, since high-school kids may not know exactly what volunteering means or how to connect with the right organization.
Pittsburgh Cares is also offering a teachers' workshop on volunteerism and service at the event. The organization hopes to create additional volunteer fairs for local college students, or members of the general public.
"Our goal,” concludes McGraw, “is to make volunteering easy and support our agency partners in fulfilling their missions."
Not a member of your high-school student council (anymore)? Still want to volunteer? Get started by signing up for Pittsburgh Cares here
Writer: Marty Levine
Source: Holly McGraw, Pittsburgh Cares