By Erin Barnhart.
This past January, in response to the many requests we received from people seeking information on how to volunteer in Haiti following its devastating earthquake, we blogged that one of the best things would-be volunteers could do was donate money to those organizations with trained personnel already in-country and then wait for the situation on the ground to stabilize before seeking to volunteer themselves. We also advised that the work of recovery and rebuilding following major disasters is enormous and complex and that volunteers would be needed to partner with local communities for months and years afterward. We suggested that individuals be patient and keep checking back for expanded opportunities to get involved.
Now, six months later, we thought we’d take a look to see what new volunteer projects and roles have emerged in the intervening months for those who are eager to lend a hand in or for Haiti.
The heartbreaking news is that there is still so much work to be done for Haiti to recover from the devastation of January 12. But the good news is that more and more opportunities are opening up for caring global citizens to lend a hand and partner with local residents in recovery and rebuilding efforts.
A quick search of volunteer opportunities posted on our site turned up over 70 Haiti-focused volunteer projects and roles, both on the ground in Haiti as well as from local communities around the globe. In addition to there simply being more opportunities, there has also been an expansion in the sheer range of skills and talents sought. Here are some that are currently in demand:
- Agricultural assistance
- Business consulting
- Child care
- Counseling and trauma assistance
- Database management
- Environmental and conservation roles
- Food distribution
- Fundraising and development
- Graphic design
- Human resources management
- Legal assistance
- Medical and health care (including physical and occupational therapy)
- Oral history
- Organizational capacity development
- Outreach, advertising, and public relations
- Project management
- Social media
- Tax advising
- Teaching and training
- Urban planning
- Videography and filmmaking
- Volunteer coordination
- Water resource management
- Website design and maintenance
Want to learn more about how you might help? Search our site for volunteer opportunities. Also, if you were interested in helping in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake, consider looking for opportunities to participate in disaster response training in your local community now; getting trained today could prepare you to serve as a first responder in a future disaster situation.
For more information on what’s happening now in Haiti, check out Hope for Haiti now.
[This blog entry appeared on an older version of Idealist; any broken links are a result of having re-launched our site in Fall 2010.]