So many people rely on having a sense of purpose bigger than themselves. It helps them get out of bed in the morning, inspires them to take better care of their health, and keeps them moving through difficult days. For many people, one of the best ways to feel this sense of purpose is through volunteering. There’s something special about being able to give back to people you care about or causes you to believe in that really can help you feel like you’re living purposefully.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many seniors have had to stop participating in their typical volunteer opportunities. In-person volunteering isn’t necessarily the safest place for seniors to be.
Just because you can’t volunteer in person doesn’t mean you have to stop volunteering altogether, though! There are plenty of ways you can safely volunteer during the pandemic and feel a sense of purpose that brings something special to your days. Here are a few options you may want to consider.
Top 4 Virtual Volunteer Opportunities for Seniors
1. Support First Responders and Front Line Workers
The people who are caring for those in our community who are suffering from the pandemic require so much support right now. This has been an extremely trying, challenging, and overwhelming time for our doctors, nurses, and first responders. They need a little extra encouragement to know that people are thinking of them.
If you enjoy being in the kitchen, consider preparing meals or to could send to your local hospital. Or, if that’s not your forte, consider writing thank you notes or letters of encouragement to remind them that the community cares for them and is grateful for what they’re doing.
2. Virtual Tutoring
So many students are still participating in virtual schooling, and yet some children struggle to keep up with their classmates in the online education world. If you would typically volunteer as a tutor at a local school, reach out to those in your area to see if you can virtually tutor a student or two. Even though it’s still virtual, the one-on-one setup of tutoring can make a world of difference for some students.
3. Sew Face Masks
If you’re skilled with a sewing machine or needle and thread, consider making face masks for your local community. You can donate them to churches, homeless shelters, or food pantries. Or, contact local leaders in your area to find out what areas need donated face masks the most.
4. Support Local Businesses
This isn’t technically a volunteer opportunity, but it is an incredibly valuable way to help some people in your community. Many local businesses have struggled over the past year, and they can use support from the people in their community. Shop local businesses for gifts for loved ones or purchase gift cards to restaurants that you and your family can use when you feel comfortable going out again.
Time for Purposeful Living
Depending on what your favorite volunteer opportunity is, it can sometimes be difficult to find the time we want to spend on it. Even after retiring it seems like life and responsibilities seem to fill our calendars. If you’re looking for a way to fit more purposeful living into your days, consider moving to a retirement community. Believe it or not, you’ll be setting yourself up for great success when it comes to living purposefully.
First of all, you’ll have more free time to spend on things you love since you won’t have to worry about home maintenance and upkeep. Then, you’re in a community with other people who also want to get involved in and support their greater community. Many senior living communities even have volunteer groups that can help you find the best opportunity for your skills.