Corporate volunteering encourages employees to volunteer in the community by donating their time, skills, and resources to make a positive impact in society. These activities help employees develop new skills, improve team collaboration, and become champions of the company mission. Whether you’re launching a new corporate volunteering initiative or expanding an existing one, look no further. We have compiled company volunteering ideas to assist you in initiating or expanding your employee volunteering efforts.
We have also included a checklist toward the end of this article to help teams execute a purposeful corporate volunteering event.
Top 12 Corporate Volunteering Ideas for 2023
Virtual volunteering ideas
Virtual volunteering enables employees to support global causes, regardless of their location. Employees can show their support through various virtual means such as
Disaster relief aid
1. First-aid kit supply drive
Organizations can organize a virtual supply drive where employees volunteer to make and donate first aid kits as a form of disaster relief aid. Employees can collect and assemble a DIY first aid kit with all basic needs and necessities and have them sent out to the affected areas through the NPO they are partnering with.
💡Inspiring example of impact
Feeding America's virtual supply drive for the Texas winter storm raised $1.7M, with 300+ companies participating, providing 18M meals and supplies. The virtual supply drive allowed companies to create their own online fundraising pages and encourage their employees and customers to donate funds to help purchase critical supplies such as water, food, and shelter for people affected by the storm.
2. Remote volunteer coordination
Companies can partner with a disaster relief nonprofit organization to provide remote volunteer coordination services. Employees can organize and manage volunteer efforts in affected areas through remote volunteers. Teams can work remotely to communicate with on-ground volunteers and ensure that aid is being delivered to those in need.
💡Inspiring example of impact
Microsoft partnered with Team Rubicon to create a volunteer management system for disaster response, aiding in quick identification and deployment of volunteers through its tech support. The system also allows remote coordination and communication, increasing efficiency.
Academic and educational support
3. Virtual career mentoring
Organizations can partner with schools or educational institutions to provide virtual career mentoring to students enabling career exploration and development. Employees can also provide feedback on resumes and cover letters. This remote volunteering opportunity allows employees to share their expertise and provide valuable career support to students, without having to leave their homes.
4. Online translation volunteering
Employees can translate reading material for students in their local language thereby improving literacy rates among underserved communities.
Health & wellness awareness aid
5. Virtual Walk Fundraiser
Organizations can organize virtual walk fundraisers to raise awareness and funds for chronic diseases such as diabetes or heart disease. Employees around the globe can join in for a walk/run in their neighborhoods or on a virtual treadmill to raise awareness in their communities. This virtual volunteering opportunity allows employees to promote health and wellness while raising funds and awareness for an important cause.
💡Inspiring example of impact
American Cancer Society's Virtual Relay for Life event, which took place in 2020 encouraged participants to walk or run in their own neighborhoods, while raising funds to support cancer research and patient services. The event engaged over 35,000 participants and raised over $9.5 million, which helped support over 1,000 cancer research projects and provide patient services such as free transportation to treatment centers and lodging for patients and their families.
6. Virtual Support Groups
Provide virtual support groups for individuals living with chronic diseases. A chronic disease that has been stigmatized over the years is HIV
- Employees and their relatives & friends with personal experience or knowledge of HIV can be facilitators for the support group.
- Employees can address topics related to HIV, including coping mechanisms and treatment options, and raise awareness about common misconceptions.
- This also provides an avenue for employees to learn more about HIV, increase awareness, and reduce the stigma.
- Virtual meetings through video conferencing or messaging apps provide a safe and private space for individuals living with HIV to share their experiences and receive support from others who understand what they are going through.
These support groups can focus on different cause areas throughout the year to enable continuous impact and learning opportunities for employees.
You may find interesting: 8 Nonprofit organizations on the lookout for virtual volunteers.
In-person volunteering ideas
Organizations often offer local volunteering opportunities to employees and teams as it enhances team collaboration and embeds organizational goals. These programs also improve brand reputation while improving the communities in which employees work and live.
Food Bank- Hunger Relief Aid
7. Food drive competition
Organize a food drive competition to collect non-perishable foods for a local food bank or hunger relief aid organization. Employees can make a healthy list of non-perishables to donate and distribute. To encourage participation, organize a friendly contest between departments or teams, with prizes for the group that collects the most food!
8. Employee volunteering at food banks
Employee volunteers can sort, pack, and distribute food donations. This community volunteer activity can be organized as a team building volunteer activity with employees working together to help others in their local community. It also increases employee awareness about the challenges of food insecurity and the impact of their efforts in the local community.
Climate and Environmental crisis
9. Adopt-a-Park program
Partner with local parks and nature reserves to establish an Adopt-a-Park program. If there's a local park near your office location, adopt an initiative to look after its maintenance. Employees can volunteer their time to clean up the park, remove litter, and maintain the trails.
This volunteering opportunity can promote a sense of ownership and pride in the local community while preserving natural habitats.
💡 Inspiring examples of impact
New York City Parks Department's environmental program allows companies to adopt a park and organize volunteer events to help maintain and improve the park's environmental and recreational features. Over 40 companies adopted 60+ NYC parks via Parks Dept's program, contributing 8K volunteer hours for tasks like tree planting and litter removal.
10. Energy efficiency drive
Implement energy audits to identify areas of energy waste within the organization and spread their initiatives and success amongst communities through workshops. Employee volunteers or green teams can assume ownership of these exercises and encourage employee engagement by promoting awareness and education on sustainable practices through workshops, webinars, or other channels that contribute to sustainability.
11. Cultural exchange volunteering activities
Through this employee volunteer activity companies can promote diversity and inclusion, strengthen community relations, and support human rights. Employees can volunteer to teach language classes, share culinary knowledge, and spotlight cultural traditions to foster awareness and understanding.
12. Community service projects
Employees can volunteer their time to support underserved communities through projects such as building homes for families in need, organizing fundraisers, and advocating for local needs. This volunteering opportunity can help employees understand the impact of their efforts and promote a sense of social responsibility.
Checklist for a Successful Corporate Volunteer Event
To ensure your corporate volunteer events are impactful and engaging, we’ve created a checklist you can use to ensure success
- Plan & Strategize
- Define the purpose of the project and align it with the company's CSR goals. Goodera partners with over 50,000 global, vetted nonprofits to help organizations give back locally or globally.
- Identify the skills and resources needed to execute the project.
- Recruit skilled, passionate volunteers.
- Set goals, timelines, and milestones.
- Train and Assign Responsibilities
- Provide training and support for volunteers to ensure they have the necessary knowledge and tools.
- Assign proper roles and responsibilities to ensure accountability.
- Reflect and Evaluate
- Schedule time to reflect and evaluate after a community volunteer event.
- Consider questions such as: What went well? What could have been done differently? What did we learn?
- Use the feedback to improve future volunteer events.
- Follow-Up with the Community Partners
- Follow-up with community partners after the volunteer event to express gratitude and assess the impact.
- Consider opportunities for continued collaboration and support.
- Recognize & Appreciate
- Recognize and appreciate employees who volunteered their time and effort.
- Consider awards or incentives for employees who go above and beyond in their volunteer efforts.
- Communication and PR
- Use social media and other channels to communicate the impact story of the volunteering event to the wider community.
- Share stories and photos of the event to promote the organization's commitment to social responsibility.
For a step-by-step guide to plan your first volunteering event at work, check out our Guide to Planning and Executing Your Volunteering Program.