Staying Active this Summer

It’s coming closer to the end of the year, and the upcoming doom that is finals week is almost here. As we write our last essays and study for our tests, most of us must also figure out what the hell we’re going to do during the summer. Most organizations are already choosing its interns, but this doesn’t mean we can’t still do something meaningful with our time. Assuming you’re pretty stressed out right now, I thought I’d make your search easier by compiling a list of a few organizations—related to women and LGBT activism—worth contacting, along with snippets from their mission statements. (Note: though I can’t guarantee they’ll have an open spot for you in the summer, it’s always worth trying again in the fall)

The Aurora Center

To serve all victims/survivors/concerned people of sexual and relationship violence at the University of Minnesota.

The Tubman Center

Tubman helps women, children and families struggling with relationship violence, substance abuse and mental health. Throughout the Twin Cities, Tubman provides safe shelter, legal services, counseling, elder care resources, youth programming and community education while guiding and sustaining individuals and families on the journey from chaos and fear to healing and restoration.

WomenVenture

For 34 years, WomenVenture has been an economic development leader in providing tools and support to help start and grow businesses, manage job transition, or explore a new career path. WomenVenture is committed to helping women focus their energy, systematically plan, identify resources, and work toward achieving their goals in nurturing and supportive setting.

Women’s Prison Book Project

Since 1994, the Women’s Prison Book Project (WPBP) has provided women and transgender–identified persons in prison with free reading materials covering a wide range of topics from law and education (dictionaries, GED, etc.) to fiction, politics, history, and women’s health. We are an all-volunteer, grassroots organization. We seek to build connections with those behind the walls, and to educate those of us on the outside about the realities of prison and the justice system.

EMILY’s List (An organization working to elect pro-choice Democratic women into office)

We are continually making investments to help women develop political skills and cultivate resources so that we can bring more women into politics and elected office. Only then can we build a lasting progressive majority dedicated to social justice, civil rights, diversity, economic reform, and compassion — and construct a society that values the contributions of all of its citizens.

OutFront Minnesota

OutFront Minnesota’s mission is to make our state a place where LGBT Minnesotans have the freedom, power, and confidence to make the best choices for their own lives.
Our slogan is Leading Minnesota Toward LGBT Equality — reflecting the leadership role we provide in moving the state toward the elimination of homophobia and toward full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people, and bringing allies into the movement.
OutFront Minnesota provides this leadership by delivering programs and services to Minnesota’s LGBT and allied communities in the area of public policy, anti-violence, education and training, and the law.

Junior League of Minneapolis

The Junior League of Minneapolis is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable.

YWCA of Minneapolis

The mission of the YWCA of Minneapolis is eliminating racism, empowering women and girls, and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. Our vision is to be the most trusted and effective change agent in the journey to eliminate racism and sexism in our community.

Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin River Valleys

The Girl Scout mission is simple: To build girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. Through the Girl Scout Leadership Experience, we help girls discover, connect, and take action to positively impact their communities.

Last but not certainly least…

University of Minnesota Women’s Center

The Women’s Center advances equity for women students, staff, faculty and alumnae across identities by increasing connections for women’s success, cultivating socially responsible leaders, and advocating for organizational culture change toward excellence for all.

Of course, this is only a partial list of volunteering opportunities in the area. If none of these spark your interest, you can also use Minnesota Council of Nonprofits to search for other opportunities. If you have any ideas of organizations or know of someplace that could use volunteers, list them in the comments!

Have a good rest of the semester, and good luck with finals!

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