Question, in short: what kind of volunteering opportunities are there, in the DC area, in smart growth/planning/urbanism/city development, etc? Basically so I can get my head around what this means in the real world.
Background (I know not everyone wants to read a lot of background, so I put the question up first):
I'm not a planner by any means -- I work in business -- but after reading Jane Jacobs, which a friend had recommended to me, I realized that my somewhat incoherent interest in cities and urbanism was actually shared by other people, and after spending way too much time on this forum (ever try to explain to your boss you're too tired because you spent all night reading an online forum?) I've realized I'm very interested.
I've started wondering how I can move beyond just being an armchair reader of blogs and books. I definitely am not planning to and am not in any position to quit my job any time soon; and at this point the thought of going back to school is still not really on the table, it's very tentative. But I figure I'm in DC, I'd like to get a sense of what opportunities are out there -- I figure maybe there are some policy-type places I could volunteer at, being in the capital and all?
In the off chance I do decide to pursue this further, it seems to me that some relevant volunteer experience would be good for applying (right?), and if I don't end up pursuing planning, I'd still like to contribute in my spare time to the cause of urban/city development.
FWIW, I've searched and gotten a lot of general feedback on volunteering, but I guess I'm just having difficulty figuring out where to start cold calling or emailing, and I'm trying to Google things but don't really know where to begin. (I also posted in this forum because this seemed to be where a lot of the volunteering questions were pointed.)
Thanks so much!