You should work as a volunteer as soon as possible because…
- … it is a smart way to make friends and build up a social network. This way, it will automatically improve your German.
- … while working as a volunteer you can ask for a work certificate or a reference letter. This certificate will help you to find a job because it shows that you have already gained some work experience in Austria. You can add it to your CV, which is good because your time in the refugee home will not show up as lost time.
- … perhaps your boss is so happy with your volunteer work that he actually offers you a paid job or recommends you to another organisation for a paid job.
- … it is fun and a good distraction. Perhaps you even learn a new skill.
- … sometimes it is even possible to earn a few euros as a volunteer.
- … it is a way to give something back to the Austrian people who have done so much for refugees.
How do I find volunteer work?
On the internet:
- www.diehelferwiens.at (Vienna)
- Where2Help (Vienna)
- Search for volunteer work in your town with Google
- “I am Refugee” is always looking for volunteers to support this project.
- Ask the supervisor in your refugee home.
- Go to the town hall / district office / neighbourhood centre and ask for volunteer work.
- If you live in the countryside or in a small town, go to one of the typical clubs or organisations and ask them in person. For example:
- red cross
- fire fighters
- brass band
- If you live in a city, ask about the various large organisations and visit them in person. For example:
- There is no fixed amount of voluntary working hours. You can do volunteer work for 1 hour per week or for 40 hours per week. It depends on the work, the organisation and how much time you have.
- If you are rejected, don’t be disappointed. Leave your telephone number and come back after one month and ask again for volunteer work. Within this month, you will have improved your German which offers new opportunities for you. Also, perhaps one of the other volunteer workers has stopped and the organisation needs a new one.