Volunteers play a critical role in transforming job seekers’ lives by sharing their knowledge of U.S. workplace culture and expectations, industry insights, and lessons learned. As many as 85% of people in the U.S. find their jobs through networking, but many immigrants and refugees lack the relationships that help with navigating the job search process. 

Volunteer Requirements

We need volunteers from all professional fields to serve the diverse backgrounds of our job seekers. Whether you are an industry veteran or mid-career professional, you have valuable experience to draw on and share with our job seekers. You must have:

After you fill out the form, an Upwardly Global team member will contact you within 7-10 business days.

If you are interested in group and employer volunteering, please click here.

Volunteering With Job Seekers

Below are opportunities for important individual volunteering. As a volunteer, you can also support Upwardly Global’s mission through building connections, providing fundraising support, or using your talents to further deepen Upwardly Global’s impact.

There’s nothing more rewarding than seeing job seekers gain confidence as they achieve their goals. Volunteers can support immigrant and refugee job seekers in several ways:

(Time-Commitment: High)

Upwardly Global’s Mentorship Program is designed for U.S. professionals to advise a job seeker firsthand on their U.S. job search. Mentors will support job seekers in understanding the components of a successful job search and work with them to apply this knowledge. A mentorship guidebook will be provided. 

The Mentorship Program is a 12-week commitment, meeting weekly or biweekly. We ask mentors and mentees to communicate with each other via email, phone, or video platform weekly or biweekly depending on availability and needs.

(Time-Commitment: High)

Volunteer language coaches work one-on-one with job seekers (in person or virtually) to help them boost their English language skills and confidence. This will help them not only through the job interview process but also in their job. Coaching offers an opportunity for job seekers to practice small talk, build vocabulary and grammar, learn industry-specific jargon and acronyms, and improve their speaking confidence.

Both coach and job seeker are supported by a training overview that outlines program expectations as well as lesson guides to provide structure to the meetings. Pairs will meet once a week for eight total meetings over a 10-week period. Additional contact via phone and/or email is to be expected.

(Time-Commitment: Medium)

An informational interviewer conducts informational interviews over the phone, computer, or in person to help job seekers understand the intricacies of pursuing a career within a given industry or company in the U.S.

(Time-Commitment: Low)

Mock interviewers conduct mock interviews with job seekers, either in on-site events or virtually, one-on-one.

(Time-Commitment: Low)

A networking coach is someone who loves to network and feels comfortable further championing job seekers in their networking skills. Volunteers will meet with job seekers in a friendly environment that allows them to improve their networking skills and develop deeper confidence in building professional relationships.

(Time-Commitment: Low)

An industry expert is someone we can lean on for up-to-date insights in their field. They are willing to connect job seekers or staff to opportunities in their industry by sharing resources, pathways, and skills needed. Industry experts:

  • Lead or coordinate a forum of panelists in their industry. 
  • Regularly share information, resources, and opportunities. 
  • Recommend concrete job search tips or referrals. 

What to expect as an industry expert: We will keep you on a list of volunteers we can tap as needs arise. We will invite you to participate in staff support or job-seeker learning opportunities.

(Time-Commitment: Low)

Based on industry and experience, we are looking for volunteers who can review job-seeker portfolios. This can be for any industry that often requires samples of professional work.

(Time-Commitment: Low)

Profile reviewers are those who love LinkedIn and know how to use it to its full potential. They will work one-on-one with a job seeker to create a stellar LinkedIn profile, teach them how to optimize LinkedIn features, or show them how to search for the right job or connection.

Organizational Volunteering

Volunteers also support organization mission-critical areas, including building vital relationships with employers, communication, development, and strategic support:

We are committed to shaping communications that build productive narratives about immigrant and refugee contributions. We are looking for volunteer “Connectors” who are willing to share Upwardly Global posts on their personal social media networks and to assist our communications and marketing efforts.

Philanthropy is a crucial driver of our work and helps us build community. We are looking for volunteers who are open to making warm introductions to individuals and/or foundations interested in this work as well as helping to fundraise for events and crucial campaigns.

Does your firm support nonprofits through deep-dive pro bono strategy work? We would love to discuss current projects around capacity building, outreach, development, and other core areas of work.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions we frequently receive and answers to help you get started on your volunteer journey.