Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Inaugural Post

The idea for this blog came from a conversation I had with Krisann at Chicago Architecture Foundation. We both agreed it was strange that there wasn’t a central location for architects, designers, etc. to find volunteer and community service opportunities.

Like many architects and other members of the AEC industry, I recently found myself with plenty of time on my hands and so approached the AIA hoping to find such a central location or service. While they don’t have a system in place, I was given several contacts with whom to follow-up. It was surprising to me the amount of leg work that was needed not only to find organizations appropriate for architects but also whether or not they were in need of volunteers at the moment.

I’ve been hearing stories of potential employees offering to work for free. Well guess what? There’s an outlet for that. It’s called community service. This site is a resource for people looking to keep busy while making on impact on their community. And if you are busy, maybe you can still put in a couple of hours a week. It’s also a resource for not-for-profits and community groups to post their events. The calendar of events will be kept plenty current with the hopes that not-for-profits will get the volunteers they need and volunteers will find a group they’re interested in.

While there are many sites out there that list volunteer opportunities, none are specific to the skills and experiences of architects and designers. I’ll also be writing about some of the events and experiences of the people involved. Topics of posts will eventually be expanded into other areas of the profession.

Through all of the doom and gloom in the media today, look for these posts to be bright spots. Money is tight for everyone right now, not-for-profits included. But in this current climate one thing the AEC industry does have is plenty of labor. So let’s get to work. People need you.

Steven Pantazis

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