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Old 18.05.2016, 20:17
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Volunteer Work in Zurich

Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone would know of any charities or organisations where you can do volunteer work in Zurich?

We're looking for other ways to meet people while helping out with a good cause but not really sure where to start!

Thanks in advance,

docneti
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Old 18.05.2016, 23:00
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

You need to be fairly fluent in the local language (German in Zurich) as the other team members need to be able to communicate with you.

Who to contact?

The known charities with an office in your area, (Rotes Kreuz etc) consult Swiss telephone book http://www.local.ch/

.. Or your local Gemeinde Sozialdienst whom will know the local centers, where your help could be useful.
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Old 19.05.2016, 08:41
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

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Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone would know of any charities or organisations where you can do volunteer work in Zurich?

We're looking for other ways to meet people while helping out with a good cause but not really sure where to start!

Thanks in advance,

docneti
Have a look at https://www.facebook.com/Internation...2536170366588/ most of their activities are in English
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Old 19.05.2016, 09:25
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

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do volunteer work
Start at https://www.benevol-jobs.ch/ - this is at least one platform.

I am unable to make any statements about the quality of the service, nor do I know how they finance their operations.

In Switzerland, I would expect some kind of funding to come from either the state or the canton, if only for lending credibility to the effort. That platform does not advertise any support of that kind. I cannot tell what that means (and there is no way for me to phrase this in a more factual, more neutral way - which is exactly the notion I want to convey)
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Old 19.05.2016, 18:28
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

I quit the club quite a few years ago, but nonetheless if I was you I'd ask the churches. With them you're sure not to be taken advantage of.

Or perhaps rather:
You won't be taken more advantage of than you invite them to

As for lack of German: That can probably be worked around.

A search for "Freiwilligenarbeit Dübendorf" gives multiple useful hits. Even if what's currently looked for doesn't meet your abilities you still get contacts.
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Old 21.05.2016, 18:02
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

Thanks everyone for your suggestions! My main reason for asking is that volunteer work is a good way to meet people and hopefully encourage us to use and improve our language skills!

Hopefully we'll find something!
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Old 22.05.2016, 18:30
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

I think your idea is excellent. Even with minimal German knowledge, you could help someone. And since you expressly intend to improve your language skills, so much the better.

In Zurich, the organisation http://www.nachbarschaftshilfe.ch/ (in English "Neighbourhood help") keeps lists of people who can offer help, and anyone can appeal for helpers, there. The help is given and received entirely free.

There are a dozen or so community centres, run jointly by the City of Zurich and pro juventute (an organisation for the youth). They offer many groups, courses and meet-ups for children, young people and adults. Some are run by a paid staff member, but many of the projects there also need volunteers.
http://www.gz-zh.ch/

Here is the part of the Red Cross that coordinates private people to visit other private people at home, or to escort them to doctor's appointments, for example. Some volunteers do this by car (and are paid a small petrol allowance), others go by public transport.
https://www.redcross.ch/de/srk-diens...gen-Einsamkeit

Some hospitals have volunteers who receive guests and show them their rooms, etc. and probably you would need German for that... but it would be worth finding out if there is a need, particularly, say, at the Universitätsspital or Waidspital for helpers for English-speaking patients.

If you are interested in ecological matters, you could join a collective project like http://www.ortoloco.ch/photologue/gallery/page/1/, which grows its own vegetables.
Or get in touch with those around the Urban Gardening project at the ETH Zürich
https://www.ethz.ch/content/dam/ethz...nal_report.pdf

Of course, you could always try posting on this forum, asking if anyone would like any help from you, for example in exchange for practicing German or for help with any other aspect of your integration process. If you'd like to do than, then it would be good if you would list the kinds of skills you would like to share.

One of the main ways to get to know people where you live is to join a club or society (known in German as "Verein"). The municipality office (Gemeinde) where you live can usually give you a list of the main Vereine in the area. Those Vereine have regular meet-ups for their particular activity, and generally welcome newcomers willing to share and to learn, and sometimes also have social events beyond the actual meetings.
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Old 22.05.2016, 20:26
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

Wow thanks @doropfiz so many great ideas here! I do like the sound of the Urban Gardening Project so I think this is something we will check out! The neighbourhood help to as this way we can get to know more people in our area!
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Old 24.06.2016, 10:54
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Re: Volunteer Work in Zurich

The SRK Zürich (Swiss Red Cross - Zurich) has formed a volunteer group for English-speakers, according to this article in today's NZZ. These volunteers collect donations, for example, through bake sales:

http://www.nzz.ch/schweiz/150-jahre-...glish-ld.90638
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