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Want to volunteer your skills in Berlin but not sure how to go about it? Heard about Pro-bono but not sure what it is? We've got the answers in this overview of volunteering opportunities in Berlin.
So, you're interested in social change and being a Changer, but you have a regular job, at a regular for-profit, university, or are self-employed. What to do? Does this mean your soul will be banished to the underworld? No, of course not! Getting regular businesses and other service providers onboard in the world of social impact is crucial to sustainable social change (we can’t do it on our own non-profits!) - and we want to make doing good as easy as possible for you too!
What is Pro-Bono?
Many organizations tackling social problems don’t have access to the marketing, design, technology, management or strategic planning resources they need to succeed. Without this talent, few are able to have their intended impact on critical issues like the environment, health and education. Pro Bono service makes business talent available to organizations working to improve society, through skilled volunteering matching and programmes. It is the perfect opportunity for both individuals, and their employers, to have a meaningful and sustainable societal impact, simply through doing what they do best. Pro-bono employees feel rewarded and challenged, which makes their employers happy, and the social impact organisations are happy too because they acquire additional expertise. Great!
This is why we are working with some of the new and exciting pro-bono and professional volunteering organisations, based right here in Berlin, to make sure the opportunities for companies and their staff to contribute to positive social change are broadly accessible. We know that lots of people are looking for exciting and engaging volunteering opportunities, but who knows where to find them? Whether you are a freelancer in the creative industries, a top-manager at one of Germany’s many engineering companies or a start-up fiend, who has just touched down in the city, there is something in the professional volunteering world for you. Just figure out what exactly it is you, or your company, could do and get in touch with one of the organisations below to find out if they already have something which would match. Then get CHANGING!
Pro-Bono Opportunities in Berlin
- For the Start-up Hipster: Give Something Back to Berlin: Give Something Back to Berlin is one of the cool kids on the block. Started back in 2013, it shot to fame soon after its launch with lots of national and international press coverage and calls from San Francisco asking if they could copy it. Offering Berlin’s massive expat community a simple way to volunteer their skills - from dance tuition to web development - for small, local non-profits was an instant hit. They were overrun with so-called “gentrifiers”, who wanted to give something back to the city they now call home. Now they offer start-ups the chance to co-create community projects so their highly-skilled and innovative employees - who have often just arrived in the city and are looking for ways to settle in - can get to know the city in a new light, meet new people and make a life-changing contribution.
- For the High-Flying Managers: Proboneo: Although also still a fledgling, the Proboneo team is already helping some of Germany’s biggest companies to get social. They have partnered up with Allianz, for example, to develop some seriously meaningful employee engagement programmes. Non-profit organisations identify projects and areas they need some specific support in and then proboneo matches them with their partner companies. So if you work in a larger, for-profit company, this might be an interesting opportunity for you! They also organise “Kreativmarathons” which are 12-24 hours hands-on seminars that allow multiple non-profits to benefit from specific expertise in one intensive session. And they even offer telephone consultancies - something for everybody, regardless of how much time you have available to donate.
- For the Creative Spirits: youvo: youvo is a volunteering platform opportunity for the creatives out there. NGOs often need support with creative tasks, ranging from graphic design to video production, but can’t afford an agency or even a freelancer. On the other hand, there are loads of designers out there who are fed up with doing boring corporate logos and would love the chance to get stuck into some seriously impactful projects. Thanks to youvo’s highly effective project and skill matching platform, these creative and NGOs can come together to create beautiful things.
Interested in getting involved or making sure your company is part of this new trend in corporate volunteering? Then get in touch with us or with the organisations directly (and say hi from us!).
Other Volunteering Opportunities
Just want to do some volunteering in your spare time which doesn't require particular skills? Sometimes it's nice not to do the day job but rather try your hand at something new, right? Well where this is concerned, there are way more opportunities than we could list here, but it is worthwhile checking out vostel.de, Betterplace or idealist for a good overview of what is on offer - and Give Something Back to Berlin have some individual “giving” opportunities too.