Where to Volunteer in Billings by Katie Eliason

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Overlooking Billings Photo courtesy of Katie Eliason

Overlooking Billings
Photo courtesy of Katie Eliason

From participating in campus service events to getting out in the community, there are many ways to volunteer in Billings. Volunteering is a great way to help and give back to the community. It can be a rewarding process through donating your time and hard work. It is important to keep in mind that service does not need to be formal. You can go to an establishment or event and volunteer, or you can help those in need around you.
Here are a few ideas:

On-campus:

Rocky often has volunteer projects. According to Rocky’s online calendar, rocky.edu/calendar, past semesters have had opportunities to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for people in the community that need it, make cards, and put together disaster relief kits for those impacted by natural disasters.
Check the calendar online at rocky.edu/calendar for more upcoming volunteer and service opportunities.

Off-campus:

Donate blood- Vitalant is located at 1444 Grand Avenue, Billings, MT 59102. Blood donations are always needed and you could save lives! According to the website, vitalant.org, “Vitalant needs to collect as many as 5,500 blood donations every day to meet patient needs, so this is an opportunity to transform your life and the lives of so many others.” You can also host a blood drive. You can request for the organization to come to campus and hold a blood donation event. This is a great way to get involved in the community while helping others and saving lives.

Montana Rescue Mission- This one has a couple of options and locations. The Montana Rescue Mission men’s shelter is located at 2822 Minnesota Ave. According to montanarescuemission.org, you can volunteer in the kitchen to help prepare and serve food, or you can volunteer in the bargain center and help get donations ready to sell. The bargain center is located at 1233 24th st. W.

Food bank- The Billings Food Bank is located at 2112 4th Ave N. Whether you bring food to donate or volunteer your time, you are helping people get access to food who need it.

Goodwill- If you love thrift stores, you might love volunteering at one. There are two Goodwill locations in Billings. The Heights location is at 1636 Main St. The other location is 951 S 29th St W. You can call and set up a time to volunteer in the building doing a variety of tasks.

Animal Shelters- If you love animals, this could be a great opportunity for you. Billings has a lot of animal shelters in town that could use some helpful volunteers. There might be one close to your heart or any place, in general, that might work for you. One option is Yellowstone Valley Animal Shelter. It is located at 1735 Monad Rd. According to their website, yvas.org, “Volunteers help with shelter ‘housekeeping’, cleaning outside yards, sorting donations, laundry, sanitizing wild boxes, making adoption packets & goody bags, preparing enrichment, and much more.” There is plenty to do and you get to spend time around animals!

There are a lot of great places in Billings that could use some excited volunteers. These are just a few of the many around town you can try. Getting out and helping others is a great way to be a contributing member of society. Find something you enjoy and try to help out in that community. Keep in mind these places might have different policies due to the pandemic. Don’t forget to call or reach out to these places first, see what their Covid-19 policies are, and if you can sign up to help. For more ideas, a helpful website that can lead you in the right direction is volunteermatch.org. They have different filters you can apply so you can find the best match for you. Through a bit of searching, you can find ways to help your community and make the world a better place. Service and volunteering are something the world can use more of no matter where or who you serve.

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