Founded on March 12, 2009, Opportunity Knocks is an Illinois 501c.3 non-profit organization that serves young people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) through social, recreational and life-skills programming.
The people we serve are Warriors and it is our belief that their place in the community is both valuable and necessary. Because of their perseverance and strength we endearingly dub our participants as Warriors.
= good for individuals
= good for groups
= good for professionals
= good for students
= long term commitment
= short term commitment
Short term commitment constitutes a couple hours or shifts within a day. This will most often refer to a special event such as the OK Classic Softball Tournament or A Night for Opportunities Gala.
Long term commitment involves regular attendance to meetings or programs for an extended period of time. For the After Opps program, there is a minimum 4 to 5 week commitment. The Auxiliary Board requires a year-long commitment in order to maintain membership.
Program Support & Internships
We are always looking for individuals to take on the role of Program Support. Program Support help facilitate After Opps activities under the supervision of staff. They also work directly with participants to provide safety, motivation and a positive environment. Because this type of volunteer works so closely with participants and takes on important responsibilities, we require all applicants to go through a screening process (which includes a criminal background check) and be properly oriented. Applicants must be at least 14 years old and be able to commit to a schedule that is often the duration of a session. We also accept applications for interns. Our interns not only work with us at programs, they may also take on special projects like program planning and research.
Special Events Staff
Opportunity Knocks holds 5 major special events throughout the year including the OK Chili Cook-Off, the Night for Opportunities Gala, the OK Tee-It-Up Golf Outing, the OK BBQ Block Party and the OK Classic Softball Tournament. Volunteer needs for these events are announced as their dates approach. Special events offer the opportunity to work with friends, family, or groups. Generally, the needs include pre-event marketing, registration, set-up/breakdown, auctions, raffle sales and other roles.
The Auxiliary Board is a group of 25-35 young adults who volunteer their supportive efforts to the planning, promotion and execution of the major fundraising events of Opportunity Knocks. These events are accountable for nearly 70% of the funding that supports the organization. In addition to their event-related efforts, numerous members sit on committees within other areas of activity in the organization, such as finance, strategic planning, development and others.
After Opps – Program Staff
We are looking for program leaders and program staff who are energetic, motivated, professional , and looking to gain more experience in the field. Staff will be responsible for working directly with our participants to help ensure their success and safety. Staff members will also be responsible for planning and leading various social and recreational activities as well as activities that will encourage skill development.
Opportunity Knocks will, on occassion, be looking to add to our administrative team. Candidates for our administrative team must possess a degree in a field related to the type of work they are applying for. Members of our administrative team must be professional, team minded individuals with dedication to providing opportunities and resources for individuals with developmental disabilities.