Let's face it, finding a job you enjoy can be a tough task. Finding one that means something to you can be outright overwhelming. For those of you looking to make your way into the nonprofit world, now is the time! The Bay Area is a great place to start. Plus, nonprofits have begun to utilize social media more effectively these days and the millennials are loving it.
So what exactly does a job at a nonprofit look like? We're here to help. Take a look at some of our tips and tricks to help land your dream nonprofit job.
What is a Nonprofit?
A nonprofit organization is a business that has been classified by the government in a way that allows them to be tax-exempt. Many of these organizations are cause-driven, focusing on issues ranging from micro-finance, education improvement, athletics, food safety, animal rescue, women’s rights, LGBT rights, churches, disaster relief, and more. The vast diversity of issues and causes allows people to really focus on what they are passionate about.
How Do I Get Involved?
Evaluate Your Values, Passions, and Interests
Due to the structure of nonprofits, they have to be mission-aligned. As a prospective job-seeker, so should you. Deciding on what motivates you will help narrow your nonprofit job search. Checking out websites and reading through the mission statements of nonprofits is a great place to start.
Participate – Somehow, Someway
This can include donor events, project volunteering, or informational interviews. This may seem like a daunting task, and it may very well be, but it is worth the risk if you truly want to get involved. The power of face-to-face interaction is irreplaceable, especially if you can leave a great first impression.
Capitalize on Networking
The power of networking is big for any job, so use it in the nonprofit world too. Getting involved in internships or short-term jobs with a nonprofit can help build your network.
Using social media, especially LinkedIn, for event sharing and connecting with people has become increasingly popular and effective as well. Don't stay silent, go out (or online) and make your own connections.
Where can I get involved?
Now that you're equipped with the basics of a nonprofit and how to get involved, nothing is stopping you from pursuing this career choice. Here are a few examples of nonprofits in the Bay Area that you can be involved in.
Ala Costa Centers (Alameda, Oakland & Berkeley)
Since 1972, Ala Costa Centers have served individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. They currently need help with instruction at their offices located around the Bay Area. Their focus is on the development of life skills like money management, social interaction, cooking, and vocational skills. If you're interested in teaching and helping those with special needs, this is a great nonprofit to get involved in.
Friends of the Earth Action (Berkeley)
Want to be a part of the world’s largest grassroots environmental network? Friends of the Earth Action is the nonprofit for you! They stand for the labeling of GMO foods, sustainable energy, protecting our oceans, opposing increasing corporate interests in politics, and more. Check out their website or social media pages to see more about what they do.
Save the Bay (Oakland)
Save the Bay is the oldest and largest regional organization working to protect the San Francisco Bay. They currently need help in ecology restoration and community engagement. If you don’t mind playing in the mud and care about our waterways, check out their site!
Hamilton Families (San Francisco)
As one of the national leaders in the prevention of families or individuals experiencing homelessness, Hamilton Families hires often as they provide numerous types of services. These range from credit repair support, rapid re-housing, job seeking, technological training, and aiding children experiencing homelessness. They are constantly seeking help for many different positions. If you are passionate about helping families or individuals experiencing homelessness, this is the nonprofit for you.
Make your mark in changing the societal and global issues of our time. The Bay Area is a great place to get connected with its many nonprofit options available. Be the change you want to see!