Passionate about community development? Check out these opportunities!

Photo credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock
Photo credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock

Considering that we’re creatures of community, it’s no wonder that there are over 8,000 community development jobs, internships, and volunteer opportunities currently listed on Idealist. If you’re interested in strengthening communities, check out some of the many paths you can take!

Manage, promote, fundraise, and more

Brooklyn’s Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation was formed by activist residents and merchants in the 1980s. Established to revitalize their community, they serve more than 8,000 residents with their community programs, and they’re hiring for 13 new positions!

Over in Maryland, the Downtown Frederick Partnership has an entry-level position open for a Promotion and Events Manager to work on everything from downtown Frederick’s economics, to its volunteer base, to its year-round events. In Baltimore, the Center for Urban Families is hiring a communications manager for their Practitioners Leadership Institute, whose mission is to improve the lives of low-income fathers and families across the nation.

Have years of leadership experience? The Sustainable Business Network is looking for a managing director in Cambridge to work on strategic development and expanding the organization. Or, maybe you’ve just finished studying and want to put your degree(s) to use? Challenging Heights–a social justice organization that focuses on children, women, and underserved communities in Ghana–needs a special operations officer that’s ready to rise to their challenge.

Internships and volunteer opportunities

In Indianapolis (with potential virtual work possible) Building Tomorrow-USA is looking for a social media intern and a fall outreach intern, while on the West coast, the after-school program THINK together needs volunteers to tutor throughout elementary and middle schools in California. If you’d like to teach a slightly older crowd, the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants seeks volunteer ESL teachers in Des Moines, Iowa.

If you feel your creativity pumping and your travel bug jumping, you might like this paid creative fundraising internship in London, working with an organization that finds innovative solutions to the daily challenges farmers face across the world. If you’re all for creativity but want to stick to the States, the Orange County Children’s Therapeutic Arts Center needs a part-time volunteer and outreach program assistant to help coordinate its education, arts, and support programs, while the Children’s Creativity Museum has multiple internships available. Lastly, Maine’s L/A Arts is looking for volunteers to serve as gallery hosts at Art Walk Lewiston Auburn.

Get out there and meet each other!

What better way to help develop community than to come together, listen, talk, and share? Peruse the upcoming community events to find one you might like to try!

If food’s your jam, you can attend the Slow Food Shoreline Happy Hour and Food Swap in New Haven on July 31st–yum! Or, help spread the food love by volunteering for St. Joseph’s Soup Kitchen in Greenwich Village on Saturday, July 27th. You can also attend the Summer Community Picnic, The Big Green, in Seattle on August 13th!

In Minneapolis, there’s a great evening planned for August 20th; a screening of Not My Life will be followed by a panel discussion between experts and survivors fighting human trafficking in Minnesota. Or maybe you’re in San Francisco? On July 28th, Sunday Streets will have music, activities, and local businesses set up all along Valencia Street to promote health, community, and fun.

Finally, there are tons of informational sessions you can attend to learn how to make your organization or your community a better place. From mesquite to rainwater harvesting, grant workshops to an online meetup of organizers, researchers, and educators around the world, you’re bound to find a time and place to come together and grow!


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    • K J Pugh
    • July 19, 2013

    Hello Nandita,

    This was a very inspiring list.


    • Jemilat Azeez-Amusa
    • February 5, 2014

    I am a Nigerian and love community service. How can I participate in your programs? Though, I am planning on getting grants for the development of my community.

    1. Hi Jemilat! If you search you can find thousands of volunteer opportunities around the world. Let us know if you have any other questions!

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