Mark Horoszowski. Co-founder and CEO. MovingWorlds.org
We often talk about the benefits of skills based volunteering. Whether it’s a way to add experience to your resume, transition to your next job or just your way of giving back. But sometimes the toughest part is figuring out where and how to use your skills for good. Well, now you can do it while traveling abroad with Mark’s organization MovingWorlds.org. Move over voluntourism- and say hello to ‘Experteering’ – a global movement where you can lend your expertise to social impact organizations around the world. Mark is the visionary leader behind this program and one of those rare individuals who doesn’t wait for opportunities- but creates them.
Describe the moment you first realized you wanted to work in social impact?
I don’t recall one specific moment… I think with most things in life it was an evolution. What finally struck me and moved me to change was the realization that that my day-to-day efforts — where I worked, shopped, socialized, even spoke — had more impact than anything I could ever do on the side. This idea that “if you’re not part of the solution, than you’re part of the problem”. When I really internalized that notion, is when I knew I had to create a change, and fast.
What inspired you to start MovingWorlds and how did you make it happen?
MovingWorlds is a global platform that helps people volunteer their expertise with social impact organizations around the world. In 2010-2011, I spent a year traveling and volunteering my skills around the world. It was a personal adventure that I went on to find my place in the world. I kept a blog about my experience, and people started to follow me on it. I then asked for help, and then asked for support. When I was on the final leg of my trip, in Buenos Aires Argentina, I met Derk Norde and we came up with the idea together. Since our launch in 2011, MovingWorlds has unleashed over 7 million dollars worth of professional skills across 60 countries.
Why is this cause so important to you?
MovingWorlds has set out to tackle the talent gap – it’s one of the leading barrier to progress, and by motivating people to volunteer their skills around the world, we’re able to help transfer know-how to the parts of the world that need it most. What’s so deeply moving about the idea of “Experteering” is that the very act of selfless giving can be so transformative. That’s the idea of the MovingWorlds name – when you create change, you are changed in return. So for our team that gets to support these positive changes for all parties, it’s really inspiring to know that we’re supporting transformation in so many layers.
What advice do you have for people looking for social impact jobs?
OWN IT! I see so many people dream and aspire to make an impact, or find a more fulfilling job, or transfer sectors, but they never actually take any steps. They don’t build their network, they don’t volunteer, they don’t learn new skills, they don’t go to meetups… Finding an impact job is HARD work and it’s imperative that you take ownership of it.
What skills and resources do your rely on most to get the job done and do you think this will change for future leaders in impact?
An awesome team. Social enterprise models are more challenging to optimize, and if you don’t have awesome people around you that not only have the skills, but also have the passion and desire for social good, than it’s impossible to move forward.
Outside of MovingWorlds, what do you do in your free time?
I can be found spending time with my wife, skiing, and volunteering with the American Cancer Society co-chairing its nationwide volunteer leadership team. I’m also an Adjunct Faculty at University of Washington Tacoma’s Center for Leadership and Social Responsibility and a contributor at Huffington Post Impact.
ps- they’ve also recently launched their MovingWorlds Institute– a Fellowship program to help you transition to a career in social impact. Applications are held every 6 months and this cohort ends March 31st- check out more here