2020 has been rife with events that have galvanized many of us into action.
Even as we’ve been keeping ourselves at home, I’ve been impressed with how many of my friends and classmates have become proponents of change, devoting themselves to creating a more equitable world. Societal issues like racial injustice and the climate crisis are being challenged on individual and systemic levels in a way that makes me hopeful for the future.
Although you may not be able to solve these problems all on your own, you can help kindle change in your community. As a UBC student, you get to tap into many campus initiatives and programs—available digitally this academic year—that are reflective of community engagement and social justice. No matter how niche your values and interests may be, you can find great ways to get involved!
Contribute to UBC in a virtual context
Here are just some of the diverse volunteering opportunities—including those rooted in changemaking—that UBC is offering this academic year:
1. Participate in opportunities from the UBC Centre for Community Engaged Learning (CCEL)
If you just want to hear more about what getting involved in your community can look like, check out the virtual Communities of Care speaker events. In this series, you’ll hear community organizers, experts, and advocates share the importance of building community during COVID, plus the lessons they learned. You’ll get to explore ways to get involved in your community, build relationships to best address community needs, and strengthen connections with your fellow UBC students.
Further, the Connect to Community Grant (C2C) provides funding to students who plan on creating and executing a project with a not-for-profit community organization. You can choose to support a community campaign, run an initiative to educate others on a societal issue, and more! Applications close Thursday, October 29, so, if you’re interested, give some thought to what you’d like to propose!
CCEL also runs self-directed workshops where you can explore ethical considerations for community engagement, learn how to budget and scope for projects, enrich your skill sets in facilitating dialogue, amongst other fantastic growth opportunities!
2. Visit CareersOnline to find volunteering positions
Although you might think of UBC CareersOnline as the main place to search for jobs, you can actually browse this platform for volunteering initiatives and events, too. To find volunteer openings, head to the left navigation bar: Opportunities > Volunteer. Volunteer positions that are posted encompass a wide range of areas and commitments—be sure to check back throughout the year because new positions are always being added!
Additionally, if you’re looking for even more opportunities, check out the clubs platform, AMS CampusBase. It lists upcoming events and initiatives, as well as organizations you can get involved with.
Find ways to get involved with a cause you’ve been aspiring to support!
3. Create content for a UBC publication
Sign up to volunteer as a content creator (e.g. writer or artist) for The Ubyssey and Discorder Magazine—join their mailing lists to access your options! Whether it’s for a UBC publication or another platform, writing and creating can be a great way to educate people on a topic you’re interested in and encourage them to take action in their own right.
Stay connected to the latest UBC initiatives
Finally, if you would like to get notified of new ways to get involved throughout this year, here are 2 quick ways to stay looped in!
You bring your unique values, skill sets, experiences, and perspectives to the UBC community—and have what it takes to enrich it in a way that only you can. So, take the time to see what initiatives you would like to get involved in, and take action!