Volunteer contribution is central to the educational spirit of OLPC and ways of volunteering are as varied as your interests. Consult the sections that follow to learn how to become a volunteer, based on your interests and background.

If learning matters to you, you will be welcome.  To directly get involved, visit the web site http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Participate or email volunteer@laptop.org.

Finally, know that there are LOTS of fun, cool people out in the world who'd like to play
together with you, the fledgling contributor, to push this whole enterprise forward.

Kids, siblings, and parents

The XO is meant for the entire family to use, so learning as much as you can to help each other learn is one way to volunteer with (and for) other OLPC learners worldwide.

You can contribute to the wiki, a web site that you can edit, at http://wiki.laptop.org  to share your knowledge and XO laptop experience.

You can tell others about your projects and recruit others to join your efforts. To understand how easy it is to edit the wiki, go to http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Wiki_getting_started.

You might want to get involved in a regional group with other XO owners in your area. You can find many such vibrant communities at http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Regional_community_groups.

Teachers, students, and educators

The OLPC project is an education project above all else, so your contributions are highly valued. You can contribute by testing, developing content, mentoring, or running group activities.  You can start a University chapter of OLPC users -- both formal Community Service Learning and great informal clubs exist. Details may be found at wiki.laptop.org/go/University_program.

You can try to meet with other teachers and students within your geographic region, or look up pre-existing groups within the list of regional groups here: wiki.laptop.org/go/Regional_community_groups.

Support Gang

If you enjoy personally helping others, and the challenge of solving problems with learners worldwide, you would be a perfect fit for the Support Gang. We work together answering all kinds of questions about the XO, peripherals, software, volunteering, deployment, organizational development and anything else OLPC donors ask about.

Community Support Volunteers are an extremely friendly and supportive group, who came together from all around the world, and work together closely online. We also meet weekly with invited guest speakers by phone, and in person whenever possible.

When you volunteer,  fellow volunteers and OLPC will help you get started and assist you in finding answers to difficult or unusual technical questions. Bilingual volunteers are most especially welcome. Please join us at http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Support_Gang.


If you would like to help others learn about the XO then you can help with the documentation. We have a dedicated team and we eagerly welcome new contributors! You don't need to be a expert on the technology to participate - you may wish to just spell check or check images. You may also be inspired to write a chapter or improve existing chapters. You can learn more on how to contribute by joining the OLPC Library mailing list http://lists.laptop.org/listinfo/library and the FLOSS Manuals mailing list http://lists.flossmanuals.net/listinfo.cgi/discuss-flossmanuals.net.

You may also want to look at the documentation tools at FLOSS Manuals : http://www.flossmanuals.net.


OLPC is a world-wide program that tries to reach people in many countries, who speak many different languages. If you speak and write more than one language, you can help translate the wiki or the software.  If you can help, please see http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Translation.

Content creators, writers, artists, photographers, videographers

Everyone is a creator: by creating and sharing something, you inevitably understand it better. Writing about the XO can also be one of the greatest contributions to helping others.

Please consider offering your communications or media talents on the OLPC Wiki - whether by writing, designing, editing, storytelling or simply organizing - anywhere within http://wiki.laptop.org.

If you want to create art for the XO, you can join other artists at the Art Community page at http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Community:Art.

You can upload photos to a great, growing worldwide archive at http://www.flickr.com/groups/olpc. One group of photos even shows those specially taken by XO laptops themselves, using the Record Activity.

Hardware designers and testers

There are lots of volunteer hardware opportunities, from brainstorming about alternative power to developing peripherals to repairing XOs. You may want to develop peripherals for the XO that use its USB ports or other inputs, for health applications or beyond: http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Health.

You can get involved with community repair centers or start your own, with volunteers or as a business: http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Repair_center_locations.

You may want to work on power generation and firmware coding. To find out more about all of these types of hardware projects search for those keywords at http://wiki.laptop.org.


The XO's software is designed to be malleable because we want the help of all the people in the world who are capable of writing free software to help other people learn. To get involved, you can:

In short: "patches are welcome".

Local opportunities

Help create changes in the community you live in - as well as ones you'd like to visit. Start or join a grassroots group: http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Regional_community_groups.


We weren't kidding when we told you that we accept volunteer contributions of all shapes, sizes, and kinds. Can you help?

Author : HowToVolunteer
© Anne Gentle 2008
adam hyde 2008
Caryl Bigenho 2008
Charles McCarthy 2008
A Holt 2008
Janet Swisher 2008
Michael Stone 2008
Sandy Culver 2008
Tom Boyle 2008

License : General Public License

Produced in FLOSS Manuals (http://www.flossmanuals.net)