Community service is an awesome thing. You get the opportunity to meet many different people, make a difference in your community, and feel like you worked to make the world a better place. However, it can be difficult to find volunteer opportunities for girls under age 16, as most organizations want volunteers that are a little bit older. We’ve compiled a list of 10 service opportunities for girls under 16 to show that it is possible to make a difference at any age.
1. Organize a collection for a food bank.
Food banks are constantly in need of new items, so collecting non-perishable food items to donate is a great way to spend your time. This can be done through school, outside groups like girl scout troops, or simply within the community. You could also partner with a local restaurant or movie theater to see if they would offer a discount for their customers if they agree to bring an item of food.
2. Donate old clothes.
Chances are you have some clothes that you’ve grown out of or simply don’t wear anymore. Donating those to a place like Goodwill or another local thrift store means that you’re helping raise money for an important cause. Even better, get a group of friends and do it together.
3. Send cards to military members overseas.
Being away from family and friends at home can be hard. Showing our service men and women that we care about them and the work that they’re doing makes a bigger impact than we will ever know. A simple letter or artwork will bring a smile to their faces from thousands of miles away. Don’t know any military members? This website can help get your letters to military members anyways.
4. Hold a bake sale for your favorite charity.
You may not be old enough to volunteer at your favorite charity, but that doesn’t mean you’re not old enough to make a difference. Hold a bake sale for a charity of your choice and donate the money you make to them.
5. Write letters to people in a nursing home.
Like the military members, sometimes it can get lonely in a nursing home. Sending a simple card their way will put a smile on their faces. Also, be sure to check the volunteering age at the specific nursing home, because you may be able to come in and visit with people, regardless of your age.
6. Participate in Global Youth Service Day.
Global Youth Service Day is an opportunity for young people to get involved and make a difference in their communities. Occurring annually every April, the volunteering events vary based on location and interest. Check out all the opportunities on their website.
7. Collect unused makeup or other girly things to donate to a women’s shelter.
When people think about donating items, time, or money, they generally think of donating to places like homeless shelters. Oftentimes, women’s shelters are overlooked. However, women’s shelters need items too, and they need different items. Think about collecting unused makeup, perfume, lotions, or other similar products and donating them to a women’s shelter near you.
8. Organize a trip to read to younger students.
Teachers like to hear input from students, and if you want to organize a trip to the kindergarten classroom for a day, chances are your teacher will try to make that happen. Mention to them the importance of having older mentors and how you want to be able to teach them the things you’ve learned.
9. Adopt a rainforest.
Yep, you read that right. You can adopt a rainforest. If conservation and environmental issues interest you, you can donate to small conservation groups that work to stop rainforest destruction. Get more info here.
10. Deliver treats to a soup kitchen.
While you may not be old enough to actually volunteer at a soup kitchen, they definitely would love some tasty treats baked by you. If cooking or baking is something you enjoy, whip up a big batch of cookies or brownies to share with the people at the soup kitchen. They will greatly appreciate the gesture.
Even though you may be too young to volunteer, that doesn't mean you're too young to make a difference. There are many things people can do that make a huge impact and these are just a few of them.