Meaningful Work

Where will you a make a difference?

At Camp Summit, you will have the opportunity to gain experience working with a variety of people with a wide range of disabilities. One season will change your life. Apply for a job now!

Camp Summit provides a great opportunity for growth, fun, resume building, memories, and impacting the lives of remarkable campers who have a wide range of disabilities. Seasonal staff positions include Counselors, Unit Leaders, Rovers, Nurses, Kitchen Staff and Activity Directors in the following areas: Arts & Crafts, Horses/Wrangler, Nature, Pool, Ropes Course, and Sports & Games. Now recruiting for the fall (mid-September to mid-November).

Backdoorjobs.com • Short-Term Job AdventuresThe pay may be modest. The work is important. The satisfaction is incredible. Whether working in soup kitchens or family shelters, teaching and inspiring at-risk or disadvantaged youth, empowering the mentally ill, building houses for the poor, assisting the elderly or helping the fight against hunger, you'll find your options in this channel.

Your efforts may not immediately change the world or solve deep-rooted problems, but will serve as an ongoing commitment to helping others in need while promoting the integrity of creation. If you have a passion for service and are willing to go the extra mile to help a good cause, it's time to start making a difference—the world needs you!

More to Explore
Check out the Camp Jobs channel for more meaningful work programs!

  

In the Spotlight

Innisfree Village Residential Volunteer Program

Innisfree caregivers are volunteers who forgo traditional employment and choose life sharing instead because they are seeking a new way of life.

Program in the Spotlight Set in the foothills of the Virginia Blue Ridge Mountains, Innisfree Village celebrated its 40th year in 2011 as a lifesharing community with adults who have intellectual disabilities. Coworkers and residential volunteers work together on this 550-acre farm in a model therapeutic environment emphasizing empowerment, interdependence and mutual respect of all community members. Serving as houseparents, Volunteers live together with coworkers in family-style homes throughout the village. After a one-month orientation period, responsibilities include cleaning, cooking, laundry, shopping, and finances of the house as well as caring for the personal needs of each coworker. Volunteers are also engaged in therapeutic and meaningful work in the bakery, community kitchen, farm, herb & vegetable gardens, the free school, weavery and woodshop. Benefits include a private room, all meals, a $265/month stipend, 15 paid vacation days, access to community cars and onsite fitness facility, WiFi access, health insurance and two consecutive days off per week. Fifteen to twenty people, all with various backgrounds and nationalities, are needed each year. Volunteers must be at least 21 years of age, able to make a one-year commitment and be patient, empathetic, flexible and positive. Applications are accepted throughout the year; a visit to Innisfree prior to applying as a volunteer is strongly recommended. InnisfreeVillage.org

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Volunteers at Innisfree experience the give and take of a shared home and work environment alongside residents with intellectual disabilities.

Music therapy, art class, pottery, and paper-making provide dedicated space for coworkers, volunteer caregivers, and artisans to work side by side on projects.

Volunteers at Innisfree experience the give and take of a shared home and work environment alongside residents with intellectual disabilities. Learn how the community empowered Lisa G. to find a new way to move through the world while volunteering again and again and again.

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Camphill Communities of North America

Whether you are looking for an internship opportunity, a formal training program, a short-term volunteer experience, or a new, fully committed lifestyle, the Camphill Coworker Program offers a celebration of life and engaging service work.

AmeriCorps Education Award ProvidedProgram in the Spotlight Camphill Communities offer a life of celebration, service, and community building in which all members may flourish. Camphill staff—called Coworkers—live and work alongside children, youth and adults with developmental and other disabilities in one of eleven rural communities throughout the U.S. (California, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania and Vermont) and Canada (British Columbia and Ontario). Since everyone in Camphill contributes to the community according to his or her ability, the work is varied. Work life may mean providing human support and caregiving, teaching a craft, working on the farm or garden, cooking wholesome food, engaging in the healing arts, or celebrating seasonal festivals together. Some coworkers come for a short-term experience, while others make it a long-term way of life. Coworkers with families are also welcome (a Waldorf education for long-term coworker children is provided where available). Benefits include room, board, medical insurance, a modest stipend, vacation time, and training and education in social therapy, organic and biodynamic agriculture, the healing arts and crafts; an AmeriCorps educational award of $5,550 is possible after a year of service. Prospective Coworkers who have a genuine interest in others, a willingness to do what is needed, and are flexible, tolerant, and cheerful are eagerly sought by each community. Explore current job opportunities for each Camphill community online. Camphill.org

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Camphill Communities: Coworker and resident sharing moments together.

Learn more about a Camphill Communities California coworker who found his place to help, change, and influence the lives of others while being submerged in a culture of genuine acceptance, love, caring, thought, idea and action.

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Christian Appalachian Project Volunteer Program

Are you passionate about serving the poor and marginalized and ready to fully immerse yourself in service and community? Would you like to live in a faith-based community with people who share your passion? Building hope, transforming lives and sharing Christ’s love through service in Eastern Kentucky's Appalachian counties, the Christian Appalachian Project (CAP) helps foster self-sufficiency in individuals who are economically disadvantaged or otherwise marginalized. CAP offers a strong cultural experience, an assortment of service placements, distinctive community living, an interdenominational Christian environment and a flexible time commitment. Volunteers are needed year-round to teach, repair houses, feed the hungry, visit the elderly and provide poverty relief, while living in intentional Christian community sharing meals, chores and prayers. Short-term service commitments are available from 3 weeks to 10 months; long-term volunteers serve for a year. Summer camp opportunities are also available for camp counselors, lifeguards, medical personnel (RNs, LPNs, and EMTs), office helpers, cooks, and arts and crafts instructors at two residential summer camps. Benefits include room, board, training, support and spiritual retreats. Long-term volunteers also receive a modest living stipend, health insurance and vacation days. Preference is given to those who are at least 21 years old with a valid driver’s license and a good driving record. If you are compassionate, self-starting, fast-learning, independent and mission-driven, apply online or call (800) 755-5322 for more information.

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CAP Volunteers commit to the pillars of Service, Community and Spirituality.

CAP offers a variety of different service-oriented work experiences that fit most any need and interest.

CAP Volunteers commit to the pillars of Service, Community and Spirituality. Volunteering time and talent is a great way to make a difference in people's lives, make friends, visit new places, understand different cultures and learn more about yourself. CAP offers a variety of different service-oriented work experiences that fit most any need and interest.

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2013 marks the 100th anniversary of Gould Farm, the oldest residential therapeutic community in the nation dedicated to helping adults living with mental illness.

On-the-job and in-service training and supervision are part of Gould Farm's pledge to provide a meaningful work experience for its employees.

Program in the Spotlight With locations in the Boston suburbs and the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, Gould Farm is a compassionate, respectful family environment where people with mental illness learn to build more meaningful lives for themselves through work, recreation and community life. The services at the farm remain rooted in the belief that every person has something to contribute despite mental or emotional limitations. Serving as informal counselors, work team leaders and role models, most staff and volunteers engage small groups of guests through work tasks that are required to run this 600-acre farm. In order to provide the most fulfilling experience, volunteers are asked to be flexible and work on several areas of the farm, which may include gardening, farming, forestry, dairy management, crafts, cooking, restaurant & retail management, childcare, administration, maintenance, and/or residential support. Boston area program staff live in a smaller community and provide support, guidance, and advocacy for clients who are well on their way to leading more independent lives. A minimum commitment of 12 months is necessary, with opportunities available throughout the year. Benefits include a monthly stipend, housing in private rooms, wholesome meals and full medical coverage. Mature, well-rounded and people-oriented individuals who are interested in learning and living in a therapeutic community are encouraged to apply. GouldFarm.org

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Current Job Openings
The Boston Area Program Volunteer will work directly with program participants who come for care and are part of the transitional program recovery model.

Enjoying the beauty of the Gould Farm Campus

The unique spirit that resides in the rural community lifestyle at Gould Farm offers both meaningful work coupled with recreation, singing, music, crafts and a celebration of nature and life.

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St. Elizabeth Shelter: Building Futures. Changing Lives.

Are you looking for a unique experience with an innovative program that will shape your life forever? Serving thousands of homeless men, women and families, St. Elizabeth Shelter creates an atmosphere of loving concern that respects the dignity of each individual and provides the homeless with hope for the future. Case management, transitional and educational programs are provided—helping many to achieve independent living. Residential Interns are responsible for most of the hands-on operation of the shelter, ranging from assisting homeless guests, organizing meals, processing donations, providing case management and maintaining the facilities. St. E's also strives to facilitate an internship experience that will bring a mutually satisfying experience for both the intern and the residents. Positions are available full-time from 6-12 months with flexible start dates. Benefits include a $6/hour wage, housing (in a fully-furnished private suite above the shelter with shared living/kitchen space), food allowance and training in crisis resolution, mediation and nonprofit management. Those who commit for one year will also receive health and dental insurance. Applicants must have a high school degree and two years of college or work experience and be willing to work hard at helping the homeless. Spanish language ability and prior work in the social services field is a plus. To apply, email your resume and cover letter to Maria Lopez.

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St. Elizabeth Shelter Residential Interns are responsible for most of the hands-on operation of the shelter, live in the beautiful artistic town of Santa Fe, New Mexico and receive plentiful benefits.

A prospective Intern was hoping to find an entrée into the social work field, to learn about operating a nonprofit, and to obtain some experience in case management. Sarah Dolan's internship journey at St. Elizabeth Shelter explores how the expectations were fulfilled beyond her wildest dreams.

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CooperRiis Healing Community: Mind & Heart Working Together.

Located in beautiful western North Carolina, CooperRiis is a nurturing healing community where individuals with a mental health challenge or emotional distress learn new ways to gain coping skills, become independent and attain fulfillment in life through a comprehensive program that addresses mind, body, spirit and heart. Daily work and living routines incorporate yoga, meditation, walking, exercise programs and massage therapy. The food grown, prepared and served is produced through organic means whenever possible, and reflects a contemporary philosophy for diet and nutrition. Volunteer opportunities include:

Community Work and Service Program Volunteers support residents in learning life skills and practicing healthy routines.
The Residential Team provides safety, support, transportation and a social community environment for residents.
Animal Crew Volunteers will be immersed in all aspects of animal husbandry and vegetable production while working side-by-side with residents.
The Kitchen Crew assists the sous chef in the production of high quality large volume meals.
The Campus Crew Support Volunteer is responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of offices, lodges and the main house.

A $250/month stipend, lodging and meals are provided. Volunteers usually have completed college and/or are over the age of 22. Also seeking wise elders looking for a second journey. A six-month commitment or longer is preferred; other arrangements are open to discussion. If you are a creative, mature individual interested in empowering adults with mental health challenges to recover and rebuild their lives, apply online or email your cover letter and resume to [email protected].

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The talented and devoted CooperRiis staff is chosen for their kindness, for their ability to believe in and have hope for the residents, and for their mental health expertise and ability to find and appreciate the strengths of vulnerable people.

Many of the staff have expressed that working at CooperRiis is a calling for them.

The talented and devoted CooperRiis staff is chosen for their kindness, for their ability to believe in and have hope for the residents, and for their mental health expertise and ability to find and appreciate the strengths of vulnerable people. Many of the staff have expressed that working at CooperRiis is a calling for them.

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Camp Summit. A remarkable place. For remarkable people.Camp Summit is a traditional camp for children and adults (ranging in age from 6 to 99 years old!) with physical and/or intellectual disabilities. Barrier-free outdoor camp experiences that promote personal growth and foster independence include a specially designed swimming pool, an adapted tree house, playground and ropes challenge course, horseback riding, sensory garden, covered outdoor gymnasium, fishing pond, and lodge with fireplace. Seasonal staff positions include Counselors, Unit Leaders, Rovers, Nurses, Kitchen Staff and Activity Directors in the following areas: Arts & Crafts, Horses/Wrangler, Kaleidoscope, Nature, Pool, Ropes Course, and Sports & Games. Job opportunities are available during the summer months (mid-May to mid-August) or the fall season (mid-September to mid-November). A commitment for the entire season is preferred, and applicants must be able to commit to at least five consecutive weeks. Benefits include a salary (starting at $200/week), room and board, free laundry facilities, and an intensive week of instructional and hands-on training. Experience working with a special needs population is not necessary; however, a desire to work with these special campers is a must! Watch the staff video, fill out the online application or contact Dana Zimmerman for more info.

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At Camp Summit you will have the opportunity to gain experience working with a variety of people with a wide range of disabilities.

Camp Summit provides an incredible opportunity for growth, fun, resume building, memories, and impacting the lives of remarkable campers who have a wide range of disabilities. One season will change your life.

Head on up to the top of the page! Share Your Talents in Vermont more

Spring Lake Ranch: a small therapeutic work community in the Green Mountains of Vermont.

The heart of the community experience is people sharing their lives, struggles, achievements, hopes and dreams with each other in authentic, non-judgmental, and deeply respectful ways.

Program in the Spotlight Situated on 700 acres in Vermont's Green Mountains, surrounded by woods, adjacent to the Appalachian Trail, and near the pristine serenity of Spring Lake, Spring Lake Ranch is a therapeutic residential community and farm with the mission to support and empower people with mental health and substance abuse challenges to grow, thrive, and seek their dreams. House Advisors/Crew Leaders live and work alongside residents, leading the wide variety of tasks that keep the Ranch running through every season of the year: care of the farm animals, working in the garden, bringing in hay, shoveling snow, chopping wood, pressing apple cider, cutting ice from the lake, building furniture, producing maple syrup, clearing trails, and helping with the ongoing tasks of cooking, cleaning, sewing, and repairing. Benefits include $309/week, private accommodation within a Ranch residence, all meals, full health and dental insurance, three weeks' paid vacation (first year), 10 days paid sick time yearly, educational opportunities, use of all Ranch facilities including laundry, linen service, woodshop, auto shop, pottery studio, art room, sewing room, computers, and lake front with private dock and canoes; plus the many less tangible benefits that come from living and working in a close-knit community. House Advisors make an initial commitment of six months to one year and many apply to stay longer. SpringLakeRanch.org

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Spring Lake Ranch: Perspectives from House Advisors

Engage in the lives of others and the life of the land. Share your skills, talents and warmth with a diverse community of people trying to lead more fulfilling lives. Play in the Green Mountains of Vermont. Learn about becoming a Shadow Warrior or how the team contributes a steady stream of energy, creativity and enthusiasm for residents at Spring Lake Ranch.

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InterExchange Working Abroad provides meaningful volunteer placements in Australia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, Guatemala, India, New Zealand, Peru, South Africa and Tanzania.InterExchange Working Abroad: Use your talents to help change the world!

Use your talents to help change the world.

InterExchange Working Abroad offers challenging and rewarding volunteer placements in Australia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, Guatemala, India, New Zealand, Peru, South Africa and Tanzania.

Examples of Volunteer Projects Include:
Working at community center for disadvantaged children in Guatemala and taking Spanish-language classes.
Helping with after-school projects or volunteering at a museum or zoo in Peru.
Participating in women’s empowerment initiatives, teaching underprivileged children of migrant farm workers or teaching computer and English skills in India.
Teaching and caring for orphaned or neglected children or assisting with HIV/AIDS education programs in Costa Rica.

Many more options are available and all programs include volunteer placement, housing, meals, social and cultural activities, as well as local support and supervision. Programs in Costa Rica, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, Guatemala and Peru may include a four-week Spanish language course. Apply now to secure your desired start date and program.

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Idealist.org: Imagine, Connect, Act

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