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What is a good answer for people new to EA that request advice on volunteering?

by C Tilli1 min read29th Jul 20207 comments

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When speaking to people who are interested in but new to EA, I have gotten questions about advice for what to volunteer for on their free time. I am unsure about the best response to this and would like to hear your thoughts!


Approaches I have thought of:

- Suggesting volunteering for local EA group/community building: For my own part this is what I prioritize when I have time to volunteer, but I am not sure this is the best recommendation for someone who hasn't yet fully bought into EA. What do you think?
Another reason why this is not always a great alternative is if there is no active local group where the person lives.

- Trying to find EA organizations/effective charities that work with volunteers (e.g. remotely): Suggestions? Maybe this fits better for people with certain skills than others, if so - which?

- Explaining that EA focuses more on impact through career or donations, since this tends to be a lot more impactful than volunteering: This is my general impression, but I haven't read anything specific about it that I can remember. Thoughts? Any good articles on this?

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I'll be a bit forward and recommend my own article on volunteering: https://forum.effectivealtruism.org/posts/ScLHyCY6JCr5FtuiY/effective-volunteering

It doesn't tell you where to volunteer, but it does walk you through some useful considerations when you're deciding what volunteer opportunities to take on.

SoGive offers volunteering opportunities doing charity analysis. If you're interested, get in touch with me via sanjay [at] sogive.org

I think a local opportunity is a nice way for people to meet people around them (e.g. be on welcoming duty at a local meetup) and then remote can be valuable if done well.

We're currently taking volunteers at Giving What We Can also 😀

Here's the expression of interest form: http://bit.ly/gwwc-volunteer