Getting Involved

Relocating to a new community comes with many challenges: finding a job, choosing a home, researching the best take-out… but often, the hardest part of moving can be feeling connected. Making Arlington into a place you’re proud to call “home” may seem daunting, but the D.C. metro region has so much to offer when it comes to making friends and getting involved. Below are some resources to help you on your way.   

 

Social

Making friends is often the first step to feeling comfortable in a new place. Luckily, the D.C. area offers a variety of ways to connect with people who share similar interests.

Local Events

Attending local events can be a great way to meet people who live or work near you. Events range from charity runs to wine festivals and everything in between. Here are a few places to find events around town:

  • Washington.org offers a great collection of events going on in the D.C. area. They also have a weekly article titled 13 Things to Do This Weekend in Washington, D.C. which offers a great list of activities to pick from.
  • Arlington has several Business Improvement Districts that offer placemaking services for residents and workers. In this role, they offer a variety of seasonal programming including farmers markets, movie nights, workout classes and more – most of which are free! Find out what events are going on in Ballston, Crystal City and Rosslyn.
  • ARLnow.com is a popular news site among Arlingtonians and offers an events calendar featuring daily events in Arlington.  

Social Sports

In the Washington, D.C. region, social sports teams are a very popular way to make new friends. These sports leagues offer everything from kickball on the national mall to cornhole at the local bar, so there truly is something for everyone! Some popular leagues include:

Meetups

Meetup.com is a popular resource in the D.C. area for bringing like-minded people together. Whether you’re looking for a hiking group, a mom group, a happy hour group or a group of dog lovers, you can find something that suits your interests. 

 

Professional

Growing your professional circle will not only help you plant roots in a new community but can often help to open doors in the future.

Professional Networking Groups

Professional networking is very popular in the D.C. region. There is an abundance of local and national organizations with a presence in the area each representing an industry or subsector of an industry. Getting involved in an organization that represents your current or future industry or profession is a great way to network. Washington Network Group has compiled a list of some of the area’s organizations, although further research can open your eyes to many more organizations in your industry of interest.

Alumni Associations

Home to people from all over the country and the world, many colleges, universities and Greek letter organizations maintain Washington, D.C. alumni chapters that offer events and support for members.

 

Philanthropic

Volunteering your time can be a great way to learn about a community, meet people and start to feel connected. Arlington and the D.C. region have endless opportunities to volunteer based on your interests. Here are some resources to begin your search for the right volunteer opportunity:

Volunteer Arlington

Volunteer Arlington is an organization that connects individuals, groups, nonprofits and businesses to promote volunteerism. Browse their website to see hundreds of current opportunities in Arlington and the surrounding area.

Arlington Parks and Recreation

Arlington Parks and Recreation has many opportunities to volunteer. Examples include removing invasive plants from our parks, volunteering at family friendly events and helping individuals with disabilities learn to swim.

Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC)

AFAC’s mission is to obtain and distribute groceries, directly and free of charge, to people in Arlington who cannot afford to purchase enough food to meet their basic needs. From harvesting crops to distributing groceries, AFAC has many opportunities for volunteers.

Animal Welfare League of Arlington (AWLA)

AWLA provides animal adoption and community programs to the Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C. region.

VolunteerMatch

The volunteer opportunities in the Washington, D.C. region are endless. VolunteerMatch offers thousands of opportunities in Arlington, Washington, D.C. and other local jurisdictions. Find something that fits your interests!

 

Environmental

As the nation’s first LEED Platinum certified community, Arlington County is a nationally recognized leader in creating a sustainable and resilient urban environment. Many of Arlington’s residents and workers take pride in the County’s long-proven success in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, managing stormwater and fostering environmental stewardship. For those who would like to get involved, the County has compiled a list of volunteer opportunities and events focused on this mission.

 

Civic

Civic engagement has long been embedded in the DNA of Arlington County. Residents are known for their local involvement in ensuring a bright future for their community. If this is something that interests you, Arlington County makes it easy to stay up-to-date on ways to get involved on the Engage Arlington website.