Microvolunteering – a sneak peek…

Written by Banu Raghuraman

The opinions are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official views of Endeavour.

If you want to help a non-profit by volunteering, but do not have much free time, micro volunteering might just be what you are looking for. I was intrigued with the concept of online volunteering, so I decided to try it out by microvolunteering on Koodonation.

I have done a fair bit of IT work remotely, both professionally and on the volunteer front, so I felt at ease surfing the minimalistic Koodonation’s website, which is targeted specifically for microvolunteering. The home page is very simple to navigate and is geared towards two main types of visitors – potential volunteers and the charities who need help. I clicked on the volunteer link and proceeded to embark on this interesting venture.

koodo1

Home page of Koodonation

As part of the registration process, I was able to select the type of not-for-profit causes I would be interested in helping out:

koodo2

Selecting your favourite causes

And then I selected the skills I have to offer:

koodo3

Selecting the skills you can offer

The next screen is a simple sign-up form:

koodo4

Sign up form to get started

And voila – I had created a microvolunteering profile which will match me with charities on Koodonation. The suggested matches are based on the causes and skills I selected as part of my registration process..

The challenge I clicked on was from a charity looking for feedback on their newly redesigned website.

Challenge posted by a charity. Please note that the details are hidden

Challenge posted by a charity. Please note that the details are hidden

This particular challenge was a forum-style interaction, where the charity posted a question, and the microvolunteers posted responses. The charity included a deadline so you could see the end date of the challenge; they also indicated who had participated so far, and provided more details about the charity itself.

Typing my response to the challenge posted

Typing my response to the challenge posted

I clicked on “post” once I completed my entry and this was updated onto the page as a response to the question. And ta-da, I had completed my first microvolunteering task! From registration to completion of the task, it had barely taken me 30 minutes.

As a newbie in the microvolunteering arena, I felt quite satisfied with what I had completed within a half hour. And all of this at 4 a.m. on a Saturday, in the heated comfort of home and when the nearest Timmies had not yet opened for business.

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