Most of us want to work on causes that are dear to our hearts and focus on pursuing our passions once we have retired. Thankfully, Raleigh offers a vast array of opportunities for you to contribute your time, expertise, and talents to the community. Whether you like nature, animals, literacy, teaching, or anything else, there is something for everybody here.
Wake County Public Libraries is the library system that serves Raleigh. They have several options for getting involved with the library. Tasks they need assistance with include helping kids learn to read, sorting through donations, delivering books to shelters and the homebound, helping with the summer reading program, and shelving and sorting books.
Wake County Public School System gives older adults a chance to donate their time in a variety of ways. Many of the schools need volunteers to help students improve their writing, math, and reading skills. Each school has a volunteer coordinator who will match a student who needs additional assistance in one or more areas with a trained volunteer. One of the requirements they stress is that you are available during the school day.
The City of Raleigh runs a Foster Grandparent Program that teams seniors 55 years of age or older with at-risk youth. You have what it takes for this program if you want to share your compassion, experience, and time with children. In this role, you will be expected to spend at least 20 hours per week providing tutoring, giving encouragement, and helping children to read. In return, you will get ongoing training, an hourly stipend, supplemental insurance, and a transportation reimbursement.
If you are more interested in working with animals, you may want to consider providing pet assisted therapy with Helping Paws International. This organization specializes in using gentle pets and owners with loving hearts to facilitate therapeutic pet-human interactions.
Each fall, the North Carolina State Fair is always in need of plenty of volunteers with animal experience. Positions include assisting with setup and teardown, helping with the livestock and horse shows, judging animals, serving on committees, and running activities and contests.
Just outside of Raleigh in Asheboro is the North Carolina Zoo. They have virtually endless opportunities for volunteers, including special event volunteers, giraffe deck volunteers, exhibit interpreters, visitor services receptionists, play pals, and more.
For more than three decades, the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Volunteers have been guiding homeowners in making environmentally conscious decisions in their lawns, landscapes, and gardens. You can receive training to become a master gardener in Raleigh.
JC Raulston Arboretum relies heavily on the work of volunteers. For the last forty years, volunteers have been maintaining, building, and reaching out to the public. They welcome anyone with a passion for gardens, people, and plants.
This is just a taste of what volunteer opportunities await retired people in Raleigh. With just a little research, you are sure to find the perfect role that will keep you engaged, busy, and social.
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