Life isn’t always straight forward. Ideally, you’d find a job, move up the ladder and build a really substantial career—one that aligns with your passions and that you’re proud to boast about at parties. But that isn’t often the case. What happens when you realize you aren’t in the right profession? And what do you do when your personal life starts bleeding into your professional life and things become more difficult to manage?
The good news is that no job is forever. We grow, we start families, we experience tragedy, and we realize we want to do something else, something more meaningful. So how do you find a job that ticks the fulfilment box and fits around your changing lifestyle?
Fortunately, remote working is on an upward trajectory—with 61% of global companies allowing their staff some form of remote working. That means the likelihood of finding a flexible position you can do from home is more common than you think. And if you’re looking for that extra level of meaning from the work you’re doing, you’re in luck, because remote charity work is a totally viable option.
But why the charity sector?
When you think of charity work, you probably picture dozens of unpaid volunteers collecting money on the street or building houses in a developing country. And though that is definitely a part of it, what you may not realize is that there literally millions of paid positions at amazing charities worldwide. That means you can make a difference and get paid to do it.
But it’s not just charities. It’s nonprofits, social enterprises, community interest companies and NGOs, all of which have organizations that are open to flexible and remote working options for their employees.
So, if purpose and motivation are a big factor in finding your next remote position, you should really consider the benefits the charity sector has to offer.
Still not sure what those benefits are? Don’t worry, we’ve laid them all out for you.
1. It’s not your average 9-to-5
That’s become a bit of a cliched phrase — 9-to-5. But it represents so much more than just a company’s working hours. It’s a representation of the stiff, monotonous workplace. The one with strict dress codes and even stricter management. It’s the repetition we all hate in the working world. And the charity sector is far from that.
It’s made up of museums, arts foundations, animal shelters, national parks, universities and creative trusts. Jobs range from office work to volunteer management and working directly with the community. You can work at a desk part of the time and spend the other part of it getting your hands dirty, really helping the people who need it most. And it’s often considered one of the best sectors to work for in terms of flexible working options. In fact, the National Council of Nonprofits even encourages charities to consider virtual offices because it helps lower their carbon footprint.
So your chances of being able to work remotely, whether that’s full-time, part-time or splitting your days between home and office, are quite high.
2. Charitable work actually makes you happier
One of the reasons we turn to remote working is for a better work/life balance. We want to be happier, less stressed. And charity work takes that happiness even further.
Did you know that 85% of workers hate their jobs? When you’re dissatisfied at work, it bleeds into your personal life, impacting your physical and emotional help. But when you’re doing altruistic work that makes a clear and tangible difference, you’re fuelling the reward pathway in your brain known as the mesolimbic system, which releases a feel-good buzz, or a ‘helpers’ high’.
Now, you may think that you’re a bit too removed from that if most of the work you do is from your home office. But every little bit counts and the work you do remotely is contributing to some amazing results. Once you see the smile of a child drinking clean water for the first time or the joy of a rescued dog arriving at its new home—even if it’s only a digital representation—you’ll know that all your hard work has been worthwhile.
3. Some charities actually prefer remote working to renting an office
Charities range in size and structure, from the big players like The Salvation Army to the local neighborhood homeless shelter. But not all charities have the infrastructure (or funding) to have a big, shiny office with all the amenities workers expect. Some are smaller, passionate teams connecting remotely from offices all around the country, all driving to make the same positive change.
In that instance, your desire to work remotely would actually be preferred. You won’t have to plead your case or request a special remote set up because you’re exactly what they’re looking for.
They may, however, expect you to already have a set up in place to connect remotely (i.e. a home office, the right technology) because many charities don’t have the funds to provide you with a work computer or a cell phone. So as long as you’re willing to use your own equipment to dial in, then you should be good to go.
It’s all about finding the right organisation for you
Now that’s not to say that charity work is for everyone. It doesn’t pay as high as a corporate position and there’s a special sort of stress that comes with working with vulnerable people and animals. But if you are keen to find something that not only fits your lifestyle, but gives you meaning, then by all means go for it.
Not sure where to start? Here are ten nonprofits that hire for remote jobs:
- ASPCA – The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
- EROC – End Rape on Campus
- Financial Clinic
- Human Rights Campaign
- Mercy for Animals
- MDA – Muscular Dystrophy Association
- Sierra Club
- WWB – Women’s World Banking
Need help putting together your charity resume? Check out this free template and start applying today.
This content was provided by CharityJob, the largest and most specialized job board for the charity and not-for-profit sector in the UK.
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