Volunteering at Barnard
Barnard has a long history of activism and volunteering that dates back to its founding in 1889. Today, there’s over 70 service clubs and organizations at Barnard and Columbia full of compassionate students making changes in our campus community, in New York City, and around the world. Whether you’re looking to make a difference in education, healthcare, food insecurity, or a different area of service, there are opportunities available! Click the links to explore the service clubs and other organizations present at Columbia and Barnard.
Here are a few organizations on campus that my friends and I are involved with:
Camp Kesem is a national non-profit organization that organizes free summer camps for children whose parents are affected by cancer. On campus, Camp Kesem raises money for camps in addition to organizing and running their own week-long summer camp for kids.
Columbia University and the New York State Department of Education run a program together called myNYC. myNYC works to pair Columbia students with 1 or 2 high school seniors to act as mentors for the year. In this program, students work together on college applications, resumes, college decisions, and skills needed for success in college. Students meet together once a week from the beginning to the end of the college application process.
Peer Health Exchange
Peer Health Exchange is a national volunteer organization that trains college students to run education programs in public high schools. The programs cover a wide variety of topics from advocating for yourself and your peers, accessing different types of resources, sex education, and drug and alcohol abuse. Peer Health Educators run these programs in high schools all around the city.
Volunteering isn’t just limited to campus, though. New York City has ample volunteer opportunities, offered by both the city and other organizations. NYC Service is a division of the mayor’s office that works to connect people in New York City with volunteer opportunities. On their website, you can enter your skills, areas of interest, or location and it will show you a ton of a list of volunteer positions that you might like.
No matter if you’re looking for a long-term volunteer commitment, want to devote a few hours to helping others, or are interested in learning more about issues affecting people in our community and abroad, there’s a volunteer position that’s right for you! So grab some friends, join a service club, or venture out on your own and find issues and causes you’re passionate about and work to make a difference.
Photo from Barnard Archives.