I miss having a job: the social aspect, the challenge, the daily routine, the sense of accomplishment. Oh yeah, and I miss the pay cheque too! So, to fix all of the above problems except the pay cheque, I've joined two organizations as a volunteer. They are both small organizations with no paid staff, and it feels good to help out.
Volunteer position #1 - Development Officer at Chemists Without Borders (CWB)
CWB is a group of chemists working to "solve humanitarian problems by mobilizing the resources and expertise of the global chemistry community and its networks" (yup, I stole that off their website). A lot of the work they do involves chemical education and raising awareness about poor water quality resulting from chemical contamination. As Development Officer I am working to create and implement a fundraising and awareness raising campaign for them. It's pretty interesting work, and luckily I don't need to know anything about chemistry.
Volunteer position #2 - Grants Coordinator with the Family Alliance for Counseling Tools and Resolution (FACTR)
FACTR is an organization whose work is a little closer to my heart. They work with recent immigrants and refugees in the South Bay, providing counseling, advice and community support. I originally contacted FACTR as they were looking for grant writers and experience with grants is a definite gap in my CV. The organization is local in San Jose, and meets monthly. I coordinate a group of volunteer grant writers and research which grants we should be applying for.
Having done volunteer management myself, it is nice to actually be a volunteer. It keeps me busy and it gives me a sense of purpose. Plus there's the added bonus that since I'll be looking for work in the non-profit sector it will look great on my CV.