Peter T, I'm reading Saul Alinsky's 'Rules for Radicals' and find it very informative. I'm also reading Daniel Quinn's 'Ishmael' and find it inspiring.
Michael, I found a lot good happening at our county United Neighborhood agency when I volunteered there to help with the Thanksgiving baskets. I found that there is a lot of good work already going on and I can jump in and lend a hand and keep it simple.
I spoke to a fella from A.C.O.R.N. a few months ago and was very impressed with the work they do. I hope to hook up with them some day.
I've found that research, advice and conversation did not prepare me for the experience like jumping in did. That opend me up. I was fortunate to hook up with an agency that was not populated with burned-out help (compassion fatigue they call it) or a right wing philosophy. Find some one doing some good work, join them and you'll get ideas. It has helped me know myself better. It may also help to ask yourself what your motivation is. My reasons for doing it changed as I changed.
I wish you well in your endeavors.
Tony K in Scranton, Pa. USA