5 Ways to Volunteer or Give Back in Zagreb

Giving back to the community is a healthy way of living which is mutually useful. Through volunteering, you can fulfill your own interests, develop new skills and hobbies, and meet new people all while helping others – from children and seniors to the whole community.

For those of us that moved to Croatia from abroad and have found our home here, it is important that we give back to the country that we love.

Since it is the capitol, Zagreb has many different organizations, associations, and groups which you can join and start with volunteering.

It can be difficult to choose which organization is best. To help with your decision, we bring you five excellent non-profit organizations which you can join anytime. Every association covers a different scope and activities, so you can find one that suits you best.

Zelena Akcija logo
Image by Tris.com.hr

1. Zelena akcija

If you’re interested in green and sustainable living, protecting the environment, and saving our Mother Earth, join Zelena akcija to participate in their activist programs. Zelena akcija (ZA)/Friends of the Earth Croatia is a non-governmental, non-profit, non-partisan, and voluntary association of citizens for environmental protection.

Since 1990, Zelena akcija has worked on campaigns, non-violent direct actions, projects, and created public participation in decision-making with a goal of protecting the environment and nature.

Volunteers and activists of Zelena akcija are led by a team of professionals who work together towards environmentally and socially sustainable society on a local and global level.

The association covers many green programs across the following classifications:

  • Climate change
  • Activist groups
  • Zeleni telefon (Green telephone)
  • Environmental center
  • Energy
  • Waste
  • Transport
  • Natural resources protection.

It is possible for everyone to find a desired field of interest within Zelena akcija and to join the community to protect the environment and nature, and promote sustainable development.

If you’d like to join and volunteer for Zelena akcija, here is their contact information:

View Web form

Email: [email protected]

Phone: +385 (0)1 4813 096

View Web site

View Facebook page

View Instagram

View Twitter

Centar za Mirovne Studije - Center for Peace Studies
Image by Vox Feminae

2. Centar za Mirovne Studije

Everyone interested in combating racism, xenophobia and ethnic exclusivity, peace education and nonviolence affirmation, human security, and socio-economic justice can join and volunteer for the Center for Peace Studies (CMS; CPS). It is a non-governmental and non-profit organization promoting non-violence and social change through education, research and activism.

Center for Peace Studies often looks for different volunteer profiles who are interested in different sorts of programs. They often need volunteers to work as support for immigrant integration and others who would join programs regarding the fight against racism and xenophobia.

CMS often organizes different educational workshops which are free and open to the general public. Furthermore, it is well-known for its Peace Studies program – a one-year interdisciplinary informal education program which draws its expertise from a number of social sciences and humanities, as well as the activist and advocacy experience of lecturers and participants.

If you’d like to join and volunteer for CMS, here is their contact information:

Email: [email protected]

Phone: +385 (0)1 4820 094; +385 (0)91 3300 181

View Web site

View Facebook

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View Facebook event

Black and white dog at Dumovec Animal Shelter in Zagreb
Image by AZIL Zagreb

3. Dumovec Animal Shelter

Big animal lovers can find their peace in helping our little animal friends at Dumovec Animal Shelter. Dumovec is an animal shelter mostly housing unwanted and abandoned dogs, but other abandoned animal species are also welcome here.

Dumovec’s volunteers mostly help walk the dogs and take them outdoors to play. In addition, volunteers can also help with the socialization of puppies and cats, assist with promotional activities for adoption outside of the shelter or assist with the process of adoption for shelter cats and dogs.

Adults and minors older than 15 years of age can come and help a little friend not to feel lonely and at the same time make their own day!

If you’d like to join and volunteer for Azil Dumovec, here is their contact information:

Email: [email protected]

Phone: +385 (0)1 2008 354

View Web site

View Facebook page

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Children's Hospital Zagreb where you can volunteer
Image by Narod.hr

4. Klinika za dječje bolesti Zagreb

Children’s Hospital Zagreb is a central and unique institution for the health care of children and adolescents in Croatia. Everyone who likes to work and play with children can come volunteer to cheer up our little ones. A smile on your face and a bit of positive energy is all that is needed!

As a volunteer, there are many different activities to choose from and everyone can find something that suits him best. You can read a story to a child, help out with birthday celebrations, volunteer in the hospital’s kindergarten, assist a social worker or other specialist, translate professional documentation, or play games. By helping children, you’re also helping their parents and giving them much needed support during the medical treatment of their child.

If you’d like to join and volunteer for Children’s Hospital Zagreb, here is their contact information:

View Web form – Fill out a short survey on the website under the section “Ako smo vas zainteresirali, molimo ispunite kratki informativni upitnik”

Email: [email protected]

Phone: +385 (0)1 4600 111; +385 (0)91 4600 366

View Web site

View Facebook page

Volunteer children gardening in Zagreb
Image by Udruga Vestigium

5. Udruga Vestigium

If you’d like to give back to the community by joining a multi-functional space whose purpose is to support different initiatives to develop a local community, you can become one of Vestigium’s volunteers. Vestigium is a NGO whose purpose is to improve the quality of citizen’s lives through healthy and creative initiatives.

Volunteers are welcome on nearly every level at Vestigium. The association started its own group where you can exchange your things, experiences, and skills. You can also join yoga classes, a choir, a birthday organization, an eco-library project, and cooking workshops.

Vestigium also has a cool project called EKO PLAC whose purpose is to introduce small private eco farms to citizens.

If you’d like to join and volunteer for Vestigium, here is their contact information:

Email: [email protected]

Phone: +385 (0)95 856 1270

View Web site

View Facebook page

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Marija Tkalec

Marija is a content writer, music journalist, and singer. She enjoys traveling, cycling, hiking, and dry-stone walling. Her field of interest is human rights because she believes in humanity, peace, love, and understanding.