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Free. Or Cheap.

April 03, 2006 | Category: In My Life

OK, now that we've turned a corner on my nervous breakdown - time to figure out what's next. So I am offering myself up to the world.

For the next 6 months, I am entitled to Unemployment Benefits. As long as I am able to work (check), willing to work (check) and looking for work (check - there's an executive search firm as part of my severance pounding the pavement on behalf of moi as we speak).

They say (you know, the unknown "them") that it takes someone at my level 6-8 months to get a new job. OK.

In the meantime.

I am solvent, and free. (or Cheap).

Looking for a volunteer or at least charitable gig.

My skills are a mixed bag. Hmm. I am a computer savvy, overeducated, professional project manager, former Episcopal layworker with multi-faith experience, fluent in English (most days) and American Sign Language and a smattering of French and Spanish and Pig Latin.

I have experience with grant writing, proposals, publishing, event organizing, and lug wrenches. Also? I answer phones and do windows.

My availability extends from morning dropoff until it is time to pick up my son from school at 3PM.

I'm looking for a few good ideas.




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Tagged: Corporate, Mommy, Life


I have been blogging in the hope that I come up with some alternative career - writing, but t seems there are PLENTY of good writers out there :(. Now I am considering volunteering at the deaf and blind school

Posted by: ichatteralot on April 11, 2006 03:22 AM

Do you know/read Mindy at The Mommy Blog? Your skill set matches up well with hers - she would be a great contact for your search, considering she just did this search a year ago. Email me and I'll hook you two up.

Posted by: Philip on April 10, 2006 05:49 PM

I am brainstorming this very thing, and I haven't even taken the plunge yet to leave work. A lot of the posters here have been there, done that. But I'm keeping up, looking to you for inspiration (no pressure!). That said, I'm sure you'll find your way.

Posted by: claire on April 9, 2006 09:14 PM

It's too bad you are not Canadian. I know this great organizatoin that could use a 'you' for a few weeks. A non-profit family resource drop in centre that is always looking for someone with a head for networking and fundraising.

Not only that, they are family friendly, meaning they understand if your little one is ill or just needs mommy at home that day. It's where I started my rebuild. And oddly, it taught me more about myself than five years working for a multinational.

I am sure you will land on your feet.


Posted by: Blue on April 9, 2006 11:23 AM


Posted by: Mia on April 6, 2006 02:25 PM

Hmmm let's see here -

1. Volunteer at Bear's school
2. Teach computer skills at the local community center or senior center
3. Become an interviewer at the local market research firm *email me I have several in your area
4. Get on the local non-profit listing website and look for companies that need part time admin/comp/contract work.

I could think of more - give me time.


Posted by: suz on April 5, 2006 08:54 PM

I work as a mentor for a social venture. Basically I work through an organisation (in my case Social Ventures Australia - so no good to you) that match social ventures up with corporate mentors. Some of these organisations really struggle with the stuff we are used to doing everyday. As part of this I've taught groups how to run meetings, deal with "the big boys", engage pro-bono staff for contracts etc, write minutes you name it. You wouldn't believe how much we have to offer people who've never worked (or dealt with) large corporate organisations.

Upsides: looks great on your resume, get's you out of the house (ans is usually a pretty "dress down" affair so no stress), fantastic for self esteem (this is all stuff you can do backwards), you feel fantastic (and super cluey) and and best of all you meet some fantastic organisations doing some excellent stuff.

Let me go google some ideas for you. I **really** recommend this!

Posted by: Flikka on April 4, 2006 08:52 PM

You definitely sound over qualified to work at McDonalds :) Good luck with the search. It sounds like you could fit in anywhere.

Posted by: HElene on April 4, 2006 07:28 PM

The YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago is a great place that always needs help and could benefit from someone with grant experience.

Posted by: Miss Bunny on April 4, 2006 05:46 PM

Many schools would LOVE help with grant writing--not many people on staff are able to do that, but could use the grant money.

Posted by: Tina on April 4, 2006 01:34 PM

So, this is TOTALLY self-interested, but I'm in the midst of writing a business plan for the small IT consulting company that my husband and I own/run. (Funny how, once you get to a certain point of growth, you develop this pathological need to FORMALIZE things)

I need someone with a good critical eye and some business accumen to bounce stuff off of.

Or you could volunteer at a church or women's shelter or something. If you wanted to be all NOBLE. :)

Posted by: Veeg on April 4, 2006 11:53 AM

I have some ideas but don't know if it will work out for you.
1. Part time teaching.
2. Editing from home.
3. Translating work if you are fluent enough? I know plenty of law firms who keep looking for good translators.

Posted by: plumpernickel on April 4, 2006 11:10 AM

Check out craigslist. They have part-time and writing gigs posted all the time. Good luck!

Posted by: northridgemom on April 4, 2006 10:14 AM

Is there a religiously affiliated hospital near you? They love volunteers and could probably use your Episcopal laywork experience.

Posted by: Alexia on April 4, 2006 09:06 AM

Sounds like a plan. Just start calling places that seem interesting. Almost anyone will take a free pair of hands. Maybe it'll work into a part time $$ situation.....

Posted by: caltechgirl on April 4, 2006 12:19 AM