One fun way to stay busy in retirement is through volunteering. Aligning your time, talents, and resources with an organization that has a mission you're passionate about can be fulfilling. In Toronto, there are many opportunities to spend your time educating others, improving literacy, caring for pets and animals, and working with nature and the environment. Here are a few great organizations that have volunteer opportunities available in the city.
The Toronto Public Library welcomes the help of volunteers with a number of their programs. If you like working with adults, they have an adult literacy program to help improve reading and writing skills. If working with youth is your passion, there are opportunities to provide homework help, assistance with reading, and tutoring through the library. In each of the programs, an application is required and training is provided to help volunteers be successful in the position.
Toronto District Schools is another rewarding place to volunteer your time. You can be placed in a classroom to help children with reading and arts and crafts activities, or be assigned to work one on one with a student who needs extra help during their school day. There are also opportunities to coach sports teams, chaperone field trips, organize special events, be a speaker in the classroom about your career or a topic of expertise, or serve on the School Council. All volunteers are required to apply and pass a Police Reference Check before they will be considered for a position.
Over 500 community animal lovers dedicate their time to the Toronto Humane Society. The organization allows volunteers to work directly with the animals, providing services like dog walking, kitten feeding, and enrichment activities for the animals. They also have opportunities to help out in administrative support roles, with fundraising, and special events for the shelter.
The Toronto Wildlife Center is a local organization that provides care and services to wildlife in the area through rehabilitation, rescue, and hospital services. Volunteers for the center assist with everything from animal care to grocery shopping, and the Center is open to creating customized opportunities to meet the needs of individual volunteers on the property.
The Etobicoke Humane Society is another great Toronto organization that is staffed largely by volunteers. They staff for their dog shelter, cat shelter, office, and public relations and fundraising teams regularly from a group of volunteer applicants.
The Toronto Botanical Garden is a volunteer-based organization that offers a plethora of opportunities to dedicate your time to both programs and events in the area. You can be involved in hands-on gardening experiences, as well as special events and fundraising opportunities at the gardens. Applications are taken early and spots fill up quickly, so be sure to apply early in the year if you’re interested.
Toronto has so many organizations that need time and energy from community members, you’re sure to find the perfect fit for you in retirement. These are just a sampling of the great places the city has to offer.
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