For students considering a career in the world of non-profit organizations, it’s always good to be familiar with the work that’s being done right in your backyard. There are a lot of incredible organizations making a real impact here in Connecticut, and if you’re looking to volunteer or become involved, here are some that you should look up!
The CEA works every day to advocate for public schools and educators, lobbying legislators to push for the resources students need to succeed and the resources teachers need to help students succeed. This is a great organization to look into if you’re interested in anything from education to public policy and everything in between.
The Daniel Trust Foundation was established in 2009 by a survivor of the Rwandan Genocide, an immigrant, and a proud activist and member of the LGBTQ+ community. This foundation, with roots in Bridgeport, CT, works with low-income students through a mentorship program and offers scholarships to help them pursue and succeed in their educational and professional pursuits, as well as recognizes outstanding teachers in these underserved communities.
Friends of Animals, an international non-profit organization with its national headquarters in Darien, CT, has been advocating for the rights and protection of animals since 1957. They have projects in the United States that include operating an animal sanctuary, offering low-cost spay and neuter services, and continuing vegan advocacy efforts; projects overseas include a Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Project in Africa, as well as protection efforts for three endangered African antelope species.
NSGT, the National Society for the Gifted and Talented, is a foundation that honors and supports students who perform exceptionally well in schools and are lacking the resources that they need to succeed even further. These resources they provide are personalized for each student, and allow them to explore additional educational and advanced learning opportunities to supplement and get students excited about their schooling.
With strong roots in New Haven, YHHAP is an entirely student-run volunteer non-profit organization. Through this program, those in need can receive weekly meals and direct assistance with housing and employment, and there are always fundraising efforts going on to further the mission of the organization. This is a great opportunity to get hands-on volunteer experience and contribute directly to people who need it so severely.
Save the Children, undoubtedly one of the largest non-profits in Connecticut and across the Northeast, prides itself on the direct impact of the donations they receive. Their mission is to give children the start to life they deserve and to support them in times of crisis and need, with programs in the United States and across the globe centered around early education, literacy, and health. Save the Children’s headquarters is in Fairfield, CT and always welcomes volunteers to get involved and champion children’s advocacy.
Any of the above non-profits are worth taking the time to learn more about, and I would absolutely recommend volunteering your time to any and all of them. It will not only be great exposure into the non-profit sector and diversify your resume, but will show you the impact of people coming together and working toward a shared, selfless goal.