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RUB ELBOWS. DO GOOD

Who says volunteering can't be glamorous?

If you’re looking to add a little excitement and intrigue to your volunteer endeavors, consider some opportunities that allow you to get closer to celebrity. Several volunteer gigs can get you in the door. or out on the field. And many require no previous training or skills.  Here are just a few interesting ways to help your community while creating an unforgettable experience of your own.

Hit the links and rub elbows with the pros. 
Each year, the Monterey Peninsula Foundation hosts two charity golf events in Central California, raising more than $10 million to benefit local, not-fo-profit organizations. Become one of over 2,000 volunteers helping to make these events a success, and enjoy an opportunity to get up close with some of golfing’s best. Or make a difference courtside when you lend a hand at a local pro tennis tournament. Summer is the off-season for professional and collegiate hockey, basketball and football. And many local teams or individual coaches and players host summer camps for area youth. As a volunteer at a summer sports camp, you can share your time and expertise as an assistant coach, program aide or referee.

Volunteer like a rock star. 
Concerts and summers go hand in hand, and that means abundant opportunities to volunteer. As a member of the Love, Hope, Strength Foundation, you can gain access to venues and listen to the music as you sign people up to be bone marrow donors. Music festivals are another great way to make a difference, while listening to some of your favorite bands. As a volunteer with HeadCount, you can help this non-partisan organization register voters and raise social consciousness. Find a festival near you and visit their volunteer page to learn more. Or check out your local ballet or theatre company for volunteer opportunities that might come with perks like free admission, discounted tickets and a chance to meet your favorite performers backstage. 

Hang out by the Red Carpet. 
Celebrities and entertainment organizations often partner with the Red Cross to make a difference in their local communities. If you follow your favorite celebrities on social media, you may already know about their philanthropic activities, but you can learn about recent and ongoing campaigns here, or sign up to become a volunteer and discover all of the opportunities in your area. Looktothestars.org has staked its claim as “the web's number one source of celebrity charity news and information.” You can get the inside scoop on celebrity philanthropy here, and search some of the charities with which they’re involved. One such organization, dosomething.org, has inspired 2.5 million people to work on campaigns ranging from combatting poverty, to protecting the environment and ending domestic violence. You can also reach out to Make-a-Wish America, who for nearly 40 years has been granting the wishes of children battling critical illnesses. There are many different capacities in which to serve.

Think like a politician. 
Want to get closer to your elected officials and support civic engagement? Contact their offices, and find out how and where to volunteer. Or if you’re really feeling inspired, consider running for office yourself. Many seats on local boards go unfilled, and with enough enthusiasm and a little time, a door-to-door campaign in the warm summer sun can be enough to give you the electoral edge. Independence Day Parades are another great opportunity to get outside and make a difference. From organization, to setup, to safety and cleanup, you’ll find something that fits your time and talents. You’ll also have an opportunity to meet and perhaps work with, your elected officials.

Become a volunteer rock-star yourself by seeking out your true calling. Search for volunteer opportunities of all kinds right here.

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