Make an impact by sharing your skills
Volunteer with Us
Hundreds of volunteers play a key role in the success of our entrepreneurs every year. Empowering entrepreneurs starts with community support. Volunteers have amazing talents to contribute to our organization, and we do our best to match volunteers to customized opportunities at Ventures. We occasionally have one-time or specialized volunteer opportunities, but our greatest need for volunteers are for Business Basics Course Coaches or Retail Store Volunteers. If you’re interested in volunteering with Ventures, get started by:
Coaches work alongside small groups of entrepreneurs in our 8-week Business Basics Course. Coaches help students become more familiar with the business concepts they learn in class and guide them in applying those concepts to their specific businesses and situations.
- Attend weekly classes.
- Work one-on-one and in small groups of entrepreneurs to apply concepts and lessons to their businesses.
- Participate in large group discussions and assist the instructor in explaining key business concepts as needed.
- Keep instructors informed of students’ progress.
- Coaches can only miss three of the ten sessions (the Orientation, 8-week Business Basics Course, and Graduation).
- Approximately 3 hours a week for an 8-week Business Development Training course.
- Class schedules vary quarterly but classes are generally held weekday evenings.
- Experience starting or growing your own business or basic knowledge of at least two key areas of small business development: sales, marketing, finance, and operations.
- Passion for Ventures’ mission and belief in the abilities and potential of Ventures entrepreneurs.
- Must be able to suspend judgment and listen deeply.
- Patience and understanding of the many personal and systemic barriers to business-ownership that our business owners encounter.
Retail Store Volunteer
Volunteer at one of Seattle’s most unique and inspiring gift stores! The Ventures Marketplace, Ventures’ retail store and business incubator in Pike Place Market, features locally made products hand-crafted by small business owners working to build or grow their businesses. Volunteers also receive a 10% discount at the store.
- Provide warm and welcoming customer service.
- Sell a wide variety of hand-crafted local merchandise, including jewelry, accessories, bath and body products, art, gift items, and much more.
- Tidy and straighten store displays, merchandise, overstock, and storage areas as needed.
- Work with Ventures staff on other special projects as needed.
- Volunteer shifts are available every day between 10:30 am and 6:00 pm.
- Shifts are usually 4-6 hours long. Most volunteers work at least one shift per week.
- Scheduling is flexible, but we ask for a commitment of at least 16 hours/month for three months.
- Previous customer service and/or retail experience is desired but not required.
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
- Interest in and enthusiasm for Ventures’ mission.
- Ability and desire to work in a fast-paced environment and perform a wide variety of tasks.