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LIVE UNITED: Unemployed? Try Working for Free.

liveunitedIt may sound crazy, especially when you’re struggling financially, but volunteering can be a great way to find a job. You may not find a job with the company you are volunteering for, but through networking, outstanding performance and building up necessary skills, you’ll get a boost down the road to employment. Do you have an obstacle that’s consistently preventing you from being hired, such as: a gap in employment, former incarceration, or lack of recommendations? Volunteering gives you a chance to prove your merit, fill in that gap and if you do a great job… come away with a shining recommendation.  It also puts you back in the game, contributing your skills and supporting your community. This helps build your self esteem and that will come across as you go in for interviews. An additional option you may want to consider if you are facing any of the obstacles listed above is to get Federally Bonded.

The United Way has approximately 200 volunteer opportunities for Marion County listed through our Volunteer Resource Center. Starting with a quick search is a great first step. Did someone you know get a job through volunteering? Tell us about it in the comments.

Losing Hope

Studies have shown that long periods of unemployment can lead to feeling hopeless. Volunteering can help prevent you from losing hope and keep inspiration going. The Corporation for National and Community Service released a report in 2007 about this phenomenon. According to the report, “volunteers have greater longevity, higher functional ability, lower rates of depression and less incidence of heart disease.” However, sometimes it can feel like no matter what you try, you have run out of options. If you notice that you are feeling hopeless, The Centers has a 24 hour crisis line at 352-629-9595. Please call as soon as possible if you, or someone you know, are in crisis or are having thoughts of suicide.

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