[u][b]About the Author:[/b][/u] Hi! I’m Tejas Muthusamy and I’m a development intern at Givology. I’m excited to be writing for the blog! In my free time, I love debating, swimming, and playing volleyball. I’m also incredibly passionate about education, and helping Givology attain its vision of ensuring every child has access to quality education is one of my greatest goals.
Volunteering. Whether it be at soup kitchens, museums, or even at NGOs like Givology, the act of volunteering is ingrained in American society. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, around 24.9% of Americans surveyed volunteered at least once in the past year. That’s an impressive statistic! However, the question still remains. Why do we volunteer? Here are ten reasons:
[b]1. Develop new skills[/b]
There are many different types of volunteering. Some are very physical, like lifting boxes or helping out at gardens, while some are primarily social, like tutoring or aiding the elderly. What all these volunteering opportunities have in common is that they are all venues to learn new skills. You might learn a proper gardening technique, how to speak confidently to other people, or even how to treat a wound. Not only can these skills be very useful in future schooling or careers, many can be applied to scenarios that occur in day-to-day life!
[b]2. Give back to your community[/b]
We all benefit from our community in some way. They often have our back in the toughest situations, and can really change our lives for the better. What better way to say “thank you” to the people who helped you grow up or become a great person than to volunteer your time in aiding community projects!
[b]3. Change someone’s life[/b]
As cliché as it sounds, a small action can change a life. For example, if you volunteer at a soup kitchen, a smile on your face and the donation of your time can mean a lot to the hungry, and can easily brighten their day. Especially volunteering in the education sector, by tutoring or helping nonprofits like Givology, can truly change a child’s outlook for the rest of his/her life. However, these are just a few examples. Every hour of time you spend volunteering can really change any life for the better.
[b]4. Resumé booster[/b]
Ok. So you shouldn’t just volunteer for the resumé boost, but it sure doesn’t hurt! Employers often like to see real-world experience on a CV. If you’re in high school or college especially, it can be difficult to find companies that will hire you at a young age. However, most organizations accept volunteers as young as 10 years old, so it’s critical to volunteer if you want to include real-world experience on your resumé. Statistics also back this up. According to Jobvite’s 2015 Recruiter Nation Survey, employers view volunteer participation on resumés as more important than grammar mistakes or personal presentation! With these benefits, volunteering might be able to help you snag that dream job.
If you have a volunteering position that’s more social, chances are you will meet people from all walks of life. Some are homeless, hungry, or have just hit a rough patch in life and need some assistance to get back on their feet. By seeing how optimistic many of these people are, you may feel inspired to volunteer with more organizations, thus renewing the cycle.
[b]6. Makes you more physically fit[/b]
This primarily applies to more physical jobs, like lifting boxes. By volunteering in this way, you can not only shed a few pounds or stave off illness, but you can help your community while you’re at it. Even if you don’t volunteer at these more physical jobs, even just standing up for a couple hours handing out fliers can do wonders for your physical well-being.
[b]7. Meet new people[/b]
In my opinion, one of the best parts about volunteering is that you get to meet new people! Most volunteers are driven people, and if they’re volunteering with the same organization you are, they likely have the same or similar interests. This makes it easier to make fast friends, especially if you’re new to a community or new to volunteering. Not only will this networking improve your career prospects, you can probably get knowledge of other places to volunteer, making your potential impact on a community even greater.
[b]8. Improves emotional stability[/b]
We’ve all been told that going outside and meeting new people can usually make us happier. However, there actually is some truth to that! According to studies conducted by Harvard University, by putting others before yourself and by working together with other people (which many volunteering positions make you do), you can stave off loneliness and depression, thus improving emotional stability and mental health.
[b]9. Make amazing memories[/b]
In the future, when you look back after a life well-lived, you probably want to have some memories that entail charity or non-profit work. You probably want to reminisce about times where you took time out of your day to help other people. Also, volunteering is fun, and you will probably remember the fun times you had volunteering for the rest of your life.
[b]10. It’s fun![/b]
Although I touched on this a little in my last point, the best reason to volunteer is simply that it’s fun! Nothing beats working towards, and achieving, a common goal with fellow volunteers. When you help people, it truly puts a smile on your face, and that can release endorphins, which are definitely good for your health. If you personally find volunteering fun (which you should), you can go on websites like volunteermatch.org to find opportunities near you. Even better, you can volunteer at Givology, helping us achieve our mission of ensuring quality education for all children around the world.
Please leave a comment down below, telling us your reasons for volunteering!
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