Linkedin spearheads new volunteering initiative aimed at professionals
Networking site Linkedin has launched a new initiative allowing Irish charities find and connect with professionals wishing to donate expertise for a good cause.
More than 24,000 professionals have already signalled their interest in volunteering.
Kevin Humphreys, Junior Minister for Activation, said the initiative - known as the Volunteer Marketplace - will provide a valuable resource for NGOs and volunteer organisations across the country.
"As many people - students, working and retired people - move to take up volunteering activity, it will serve to create valuable connections across the board," Mr Humphreys said.
"I have no doubt that the Volunteer Marketplace will be very successful in Ireland and I commend LinkedIn for its introduction."
LinkedIn's Volunteer Marketplace enables Irish professionals who are willing to donate their time and skills to indicate their interest in volunteering and board service on their LinkedIn profiles.
Irish NGOs can both search for these professionals with special charity search tools and post job descriptions of their open volunteer opportunities.
Linkedin said these new tools will allow charities to find volunteers for their needs and will enable professionals "to make a social impact whilst broadening their professional skills."
Dublin GAA star Bernard Brogan has been matched to the Board of Aware, a charity which works to promote awareness of depression and mood disorders in Ireland. Boardmatch worked with Mr Brogan to find a suitable board position after the footballer expressed an interest in working in the area of mental health promotion.
Nina Arwitz, Volunteer Ireland chief executive, said the development is an "incredibly exciting" one for volunteering in Ireland. "One of the biggest barriers to volunteering is knowing how and where to volunteer - through this partnership, we are bringing a wealth of incredible volunteering opportunities to over one million LinkedIn members in Ireland," Ms Arwitz said.
"For LinkedIn members, volunteering provides an invaluable opportunity to share your skills and expertise to benefit a charity or cause you believe in," she added.
"Volunteering is also a fantastic way of expanding your professional network."