Seattle has a lot of people who care about the well-being of others. They volunteer, donate. And there really are quite a few social services for those who need help. Not just emergency care, but also legal advice, healthcare. Some of these organizations are trying to add more staff or volunteers who speak different languages. Whatever some people may say about “Seattle freeze,” I have found this city to have lots of generous people who want to see others do well. This blog introduces some caring resources in Seattle.
Seattle ranks high for number of volunteers
Just to give you an idea of the number of people who volunteer their time in Seattle, Ron Judd wrote in the Seattle Times that a 2014 survey showed that more than 32% of the residents in Seattle volunteered for one thing or another. That came out to 122 million hours of service. If you were to translate that to dollars, it would be around $1.7 billion. Ron wrote that the top 5 volunteer activities are fundraising, collecting and distributing food, tutoring or teaching, general labor, and youth mentoring.
From help with homework to food bank
Libraries have volunteers to help with homework after school. Students just come, and they can get help. They have volunteers to help teach computer skills. Non-profit organizations such as HopeLink has food bank, staff to help people learn to find employment. Not a week goes by that I don’t meet someone who is volunteering for something. A new friend had just arrived this country for a few months when she volunteered to sort food to stock the food bank.
One of the cashiers at my grocery store helped to build the trail at Franklin Falls. Yes, as a volunteer!
Free help for children
The other day, I saw a flyer at the library letting children know what time therapy dogs are coming to listen to them read. This helps children build confidence reading out loud.
Children Hospital is full of volunteers. Keeping children company when their parents are taking a break, soothing crying babies when their parents have gone home.
And for those who cannot afford a lawyer, there are free legal services. To prepare wills, powers of attorney, to help those in domestic violence situations.
There are programs to support caregivers. It can be tiring to be a caretaker. Who takes care of them? There are classes and groups to help caregivers deal with stress that sometimes accompany their work. And when they need a break or a day off from taking care of a relative, there is support.
For those who moved to this country, sometimes they need support. The article Free resources for immigrants in Seattle goes into depth on the topic.
If you find this blog helpful, here is one on Volunteering at Thanksgiving in Seattle.
Estrella Chan coaches immigrants and international professionals in English fluency, interview skills, and public speaking. To schedule a session with her, please email firstname.lastname@example.org