Volunteer Resume Examples

A compelling resume can be just as important for a volunteer job as for a paid position. Volunteers are often among the most trusted team members in organizations. An hour of work done by the average volunteer is worth $25.43, and organizations will invest hours of training and resources to secure this valuable workforce. You can use LiveCareer’s volunteer resume examples as inspiration for your own document, and use the extra resources below to understand the ins and outs of such a professional-grade page.


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What is a Volunteer?

A volunteer is someone who donates time and services to an organization without expecting pay in return. Besides the satisfaction of having performed community service, volunteers sometimes receive other benefits such as a free uniform, gifts, meals, housing or small stipends. Many choose volunteering early in their careers as a way to gain experience and make connections with professionals in their fields. For example, one study found that when selecting applicants for interviews, hiring managers chose 24% of resumes listing volunteer experience with AmeriCorps, but only 17% of those without it.

What Makes This a Great
Volunteer Resume Example?

No matter the field in which you want to donate your time, LiveCareer can help get you there with a great resume. Our volunteer resume examples can help in the following ways:

  • Professionally-written content: Our team of certified resume writers shape each of our volunteer resume examples in a way that offers a detailed roadmap for how your own document should read. Note concise, industry-relevant phrases like “collaborated with community program leaders” on this particular volunteer resume example.
  • Format guidance: The combination format shown here makes it obvious that the applicant’s skills and experience equally leave them qualified for the position. In contrast, for someone just starting out, a functional resume would do a better job of more heavily emphasizing skills, as well as deemphasizing gaps in employment.
  • Template selection: This resume looks both professional and appropriate for the more serious type of counseling the applicant wants to do. Someone who wants to volunteer at a children’s museum or water park, on the other hand, could choose a more creative template. Note this example’s effective yet minimal use of color.

3 Volunteer Professional Summary Examples

Though gaining a volunteer position is often not a competitive process, these positions can still sometimes be limited. Use our examples to hone your resume and increase your odds of being chosen, and use our resume builder for more hands-on writing help. The following samples reflect what our builder might provide for a volunteer professional summary:

  1. Compassionate sociology student with A average pursuing career in social services. Strong interest in helping victims of domestic violence. Skilled in active listening, communication and working in teams.
  2. Retired professional woodworker looking to put skills into action for the community on most weekdays. Experienced in cabinetry building and home construction. Can provide own tools.
  3. State-certified elementary school teacher with ESOL endorsement available for summer volunteer position teaching English as a second language. Strong desire to improve the lives of vulnerable children. Bilingual in English and Spanish.

3 Volunteer Work Experience Examples

The work experience you place on a resume may include positions outside your field if they are relevant to the volunteer position to which you are applying. You might list a previous volunteer position if it emphasizes a commitment to giving back to the community. After looking over our examples, peruse our builder’s suggested descriptions of work responsibilities and customize them as needed with your own metrics. These are examples of our professionally written text:

  1. Worked overnight shifts answering telephone to provide around-the-clock crisis counseling.
  2. Transported clients to and from legal and medical appointments.
  3. Made weekly home visits to mentor new mother with special needs baby.

Top Skills for Your Volunteer Resume

A willingness to serve and a desire to share knowledge are characteristics every volunteer recruiter looks for. Other desirable skills vary based on the particular position. Depending on where you would like to work, your hard and soft skills could include any of the following:

Hard Skills

  • Teaching
  • Counseling
  • Entering data
  • Fundraising

Soft Skills

  • Serving others
  • Being flexible
  • Following directions
  • Exhibiting commitment to agency’s mission

Building Your Volunteer Resume with Our Builder:

Select a Resume Template

Choose Pre-Written Phrases

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Volunteer FAQs

Can a student do volunteer work?

Many organizations welcome student volunteers but can vary in the minimum age they require. Hospitals, for example, often require volunteers to be at least 16 years old. Some food pantries, on the other hand, allow volunteers of any age as long as a responsible adult accompanies them. Some scholarship and foreign exchange programs require high school students to spend a certain number of hours volunteering to maintain their eligibility.

What does it mean to be a volunteer?

Anyone who freely gives their time or services is a volunteer. However, being a volunteer means different things to different people. Some have altruistic motives such as helping others or giving back to the community; others do it as a way to fill their free time or make friends. Some people must perform community service as part of a legal conviction or to fulfill religious obligations.

Do you get paid to volunteer?

Being a volunteer means you do not expect financial compensation for the time you spend or work you do for an organization. A job described as a paid volunteer position may therefore sound like an oxymoron, but what it means is that job offers a stipend of minimal pay rather than a salary. Organizations usually offer stipends as a way to offset a volunteer’s travel costs or living expenses.